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Full text of "Marcus King, Mormon"

LIBRARY 

UNIVERSITY OF 
CALIFORNIA 
SANTA CRUZ 



MARCUS KING, 

MORMON 



By NEPHI ANDERSON, 

Author of "Added Upon," "The 
Caftle Builder," Etc. 



Salt Lake City, Utah 

THE DESERET NEWS, 

PUBLISHERS 

1908 



S 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 



CHAPTER 1. 

Joy and sorrow, hope and fear, mingled their con- 
flicting emotions in the breast of the Reverend Marcus 
King. He had sat by his writing table all the afternoon; 
yet not even the outlines of his Sunday sermon were 
drawn. The sun went down, and the pink in the western 
sky turned to a fiery red, which streamed in at the large, 
open window and flooded the room with its warm color. 
The pale, nearly haggard face of the young man sitting 
with his chair turned to the light, was bathed in the soft 
glow. 

Marcus King had reached a turning in his journey of 
life. That journey had been, up to the present, one of 
ease, having led him by gentle curves and grades into 
pleasant places. But now the end of it seemed near; 
whichever way he turned, a difficulty of some kind faced 
him. 

It had come about in this way: One day, as Mr. 
King was sitting in his study looking up matter for a ser- 
mon, he admitted a man who was canvassing the town 
with religious tracts and books. Mr. King made it a rule 
to entertain all such who came to him. "If they have a 



4 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

truth to give me," said he, "why God be praised for that; 
and if they have not, there is no harm done." 

The man who called on him that day was a rare 
"find," as he proved to be a Mormon, a real, live 
Mormon such as he had read about, a Mormon missionary 
come prepared with tracts and books to present his doc- 
trine to all who would listen. The missionary found Mr. 
King a wonderful exception to the usual minister of the 
Gospel. This minister had listened attentively to his 
message, hzd asked numerous questions, and at last had 
invited the "Mormon" to call again. This was the begin- 
ning. Many and long were the talks these two men had 
after that, until it was well known by the people of 
Hungerton that the Reverend Marcus King had the con- 
version of a Mormon missionary in charge. Little did 
they dream of the true state of things. Little did they 
think that it was the minister that had been brought face 
to face with a great truth, one that he could not reason 
away, try as he would; a mighty truth that stood before 
him at all times, close his eyes as he would; a truth that 
he could not simply accept and engraft into his own relig- 
ion; but a truth so far-reaching and powerful that it 
seemed to overturn his own and strip him of every vest- 
ige of divine authority as a servant of God and a minister 
of his word. In short, that is the reason why joy and 
sorrow, hope and fear mingled in conflicting chaos in his 
breast that afternoon, when bis work was neglected, and 
tomorrow was the Sabbath. Joy was there because he had 
found a great truth; sorrow, because of his overturned 
idols; hope, for his soul's future salvation; fear, because 
of the opinions of those who were dear to him, and whose 
lives were intimately connected with his own. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 5 

The brightness faded out of the sky, but how deep 
and unfathomable was the blue that came in its place 
behind the elms in the garden! The cool evening breeze 
swept through the window, and Marcus leaned back in his 
chair to enjoy it. An open book lay on the window sill, 
and at the sound of approaching footsteps, he hurriedly 
closed it and placed it in a drawer; but no one came in, 
and he leaned his head again on the cushions of his chair 
and gazed out at the sky. 

He had been a minister of the Gospel scarcely a year, 
a short year it now seemed to him, filled with many var- 
ied and pleasant experiences. First, four years at col- 
lege. Ah, those were happy years! Then the final prep- 
aration for the ministry which his father so fondly hoped 
he would follow. It was the one wish of his that his son 
should take his place as pastor over the flock at Hunger- 
ton, and now at the early age of twenty-five he had occu- 
pied his father's place for nearly a year. The chair he 
sat in had belonged to his father, the writing table had 
been his father's work bench for nearly twenty years. 
The fine library, covering nearly two walls of the room, 
was his father's cellecting; and there above him on the 
wall hung his portrait, looking down upon him with a 
smile. What would he say, what would he think of his 
son, could he know the thoughts that coursed sometimes 
like fiery steeds through his brain? What would the 
young man give to be able to talk to his father about 
these matters, to get counsel from him! 

After all, the religion that was good enough for his 
father ought to be good enough for him. What had 
saved his father ought certainly to save him. But then, 
but then, that was not the point. Would his father not 



6 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

have accepted this truth had he been given the chance? 
Should not truth be accepted anyhow, no matter when, or 
where, or from whom it came? In former days the con- 
demnation was that light had come into the world, and 
men would not receive it. Was it not the same today, 
yes, in all ages of the world? 

It was at this point of his reflections that Marcus 
King's most inner conscience brought to his understand- 
ing the fact that he had received an answer to his 
prayers. Much of the theology he had learned at college 
and that which he was supposed to teach, was dim and of 
doubtful meaning. He had always wished to understand 
some of those dogmas which he could not unreservedly 
accept. He saw now that doubt, peace destroying doubt? 
had been creeping silently into his soul, and to be per- 
fectly honest with himself, he could now no longer close 
his eyes to the fact. This new light had thrown its 
searching rays into recesses of his soul that hitherto had 
been unseen, and he could deceive himself no longer as to 
Hs true standing. He had been asking for light, and God 
had sent it to him. Now he must not reject it. 

Marcus must have fallen asleep in the quiet twilight, 
for the tired brain ceased its work, and when he regained 
consciousness, he heard the soft music of the piano in the 
adjoining room. The door was open and the strains floated 
in to him. 

The melody was a familiar one, and he knew by it 
whose fingers so lightly touched the keys. Presently the 
music ceased, and there appeared in the open doorway 
the figure of a young woman. She was dressed in white, 
and held a bunch of great red roses in her hand. 

"Am I trespassing?" she asked. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 7 

"What a question, Alice! Come in." 
She entered the room and took a seat by the window. 
He drew his chair up close to her, pinched her chin, and 
then kissed her. 

"Your cheeks are full of roses, tonight," said he. 
"Oh, I'm always out in the garden since the roses 
came. Environment, you know." 

' 'It is getting dark. I must have had a nap just be- 
fore you came." 

"Shall I light the lamp? 1 ' 

"No, don't. Can there be anything more beautiful 
than this?" 

They moved their chairs closer to the window. There 
was still a faint blush in the west, and here and there 
through the trees twinkled the first stars of the night. 
Neither was very talkative, and they sat for some 
time looking at the sky. 

"Alice," said he they were close together! and he 
did not need to speak loudly "you're a pretty good 
critic. What do you think of this little well, parable, 
I call it? I thought of using it in illustrating a point 
tomorrow." 

"Tell it to me," she said. "Go on, I am listen- 
ing." 

"A certain man had a beautiful pleasure boat, which 
he launched on the placid waters of a small lake," began 
Marcus. "With him in this boat he took all his relatives 
and a great many of his friends. They had with them 
also everything in the way of convenience and comfort, 
and life with them was very pleasant indeed; for, strange 
to say, all this little company thought that the little lake 



8 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

on which they sailed back and forth was the only water in 
the world. 

"But one day a man came to the master of the ves- 
sel and told him that he and all his company were de- 
ceived, and that the lake they were on was but a very 
small part of the water of the earth; that at considerable 
distance from them was the mighty ocean, teeming with 
wonders, whose boundless shores were lined with peoples 
and cities never heard of by them. This stranger took 
the master and showed him a narrow passage which led 
out of the lake; as the master looked he saw that it was 
filled with rocks, and that at places the current was 
strong and dangerous. The stranger also examined the 
vessel, pointing out many weak places in it, and advised 
the master that if he ever contemplated leaving the mill- 
pond, as he called it, he should get a stronger vessel in 
which to make the journey. 

"Now all- this had its effect on the master. He saw 
the littleness of his and his friends' outlook, and he 
longed for the greater knowledge of the vast ocean. But 
there were the waves and the rocks and the narrow chan- 
nel. He doubted very much whether his friends would 
believe in the stranger's words to the extent of following 
them. The lake was small, but it was always still, and 
even if the vessel was deficient in parts,outwardly it looked 
secure, and would, no doubt, carry them as long as was 
necessary. 

"And so the master pondered much on the matter, 
until well, until his lady love came to him and he pro- 
pounded the question to her of what he should do." 

"And further, until his mother came and called him 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 9 

to dinner," said Alice, as she saw Mrs. King appearing in 
the doorway with a lamp in her hand. 

"Excuse me, folks, but dinner is ready," said Mrs. 
King. 

"Yes, mother, we're coming. Let me close the 
window, Alice; I feel chilly." 

* 'Marcus," said the mother at the table, "you are 
studying too hard of late. You look quite haggard to- 
night. Don't you think so, Alice?" 

' 'I cartainly do. He acts so strangely, too. " 

"Oh, now, don't you folks worry about me. My va- 
cation next month will bring me around again, won't it, 
Alice?" But Alice said nothing. He had reference to the 
little journey which they were to take after their mar- 
riage. 

After they had arisen from the table, Alice explained 
to Marcus that she had been sent to get him to visit one 
of his congregation who was in trouble. 

"Yes," said he, "we'll go together. Alice Merton, 
you ought to be the shepherd of this flock instead of me. 
Come, put on your wraps." 

The streets of Hungerton were full of people enjoy- 
ing the beautiful evening. The gas lamps flickered dimly 
in the bright moonlight. 

"What do you think of my parable?'' he asked. 

"I don't understand it," she answered. 

"No, it is not a good one. There are better in St. 
Matthew, especially the one about the merchant finding a 
pearl of great price, and selling all he had that he might 
buy it. But whom are we going to see, Alice?" 

"Henry Sandforcl. He's now in jail." 

"What? What' spoor Henry done now?" 



10 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"He has been raving again, and last night he tried 
to kill the whole family, himself included. It's a pitiable 
case, and some thought you ought to talk with him. You 
might do him some good." 

"Poor man!" was all Marcus said. 

The jailor met them on the courthouse steps, and 
knowing their'errand, he immediately led the way with his 
lantern. Into the basement and along a corridor they 
went to where the man was confined. The jailor unlocked 
the door, and they all went in. By the light of the lan- 
tern they saw a man sitting on a bed in the corner of the 
cell. His hands were fettered. He raised his head as 
they entered. He was a well-dressed, seemingly intelligent 
man of about fifty. 

"Good evening, Henry," said the minister, advancing 
to him. 

"Good evening, Mr. King,'* was the calm reply. "If 
the good jailor will take these pieces of iron from my 
wrists I will shake hands with you." 

Marcus looked inquiringly at the jailor, who shook 
his head and said: "Couldn't do it, sir. He's all right 
now, no doubt, but there's no telling when he might be- 
come wild again." 

The jailor found a seat for Alice, set the lantern on 
a table, and then left, saying that he would be close at 
hand in case he was needed. Marcus sat down on the 
bedside. 

"My poor friend Henry, so you are in trouble again," 
said the minister. "Can I do anything for you? What 
seems to be the difficulty this time?" 

"Mr. King," said the man, "I'm pleased to see you; 
but it's too bad that you and Miss Merton should have to 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 11 

visit such a place as this there, I know you will say that 
it is all right, but it isn't for all that. You've no business 
here, I've no b isiness here. You ought to be whirling in 
the pleasures of life, and I ought to be dead. This cell is too 
good for me. The grave is my place, and hell is my 
home, my natural home, sir. In the eternal fitness of 
things I was meant to dwell there. The great God who 
created me, who made the universe out of nothing, sir, 
has a right to say where I belong. Hell is my natural 
abode, and Satan is my master; and it's all for the 
pleasure of God and the manifestation of His glory.'' 

The two shuddered at his words. 

"My dear friend, you are mistaken," said Marcus. 
"God is not such a being as you imagine. 'God is love/ 
Think of what that means. He is not willing that any 
should perish, but that all should come to repentance." 

"Repentance, did you say? What does that mean to 
me? To you and your fair lady it may mean something, 
but to me it has no significance. Listen, sir, listen: 'By 
the decree of God, for the manifestation of His glory, 
some men and angels are predestinated unto everlasting 
life, and others fore- ordained to everlasting death.' I am 
one of the latter." 

"No, friend, you are not." 

"I tell you I am. How do you know I am not? How 
can anyone know but one's self? I tell you I am one of 
the damned, and I can't help myself. And I'll tell you 
another thing, friend King, and you can preach it tomor- 
row: This heritage of mine I have transmitted to my chil- 
dren. They are also heirs of damnation and non-elect 
children; and should they live and beget children, this 
heritage will also go to them. But I'll stop it all, sir; I'll 



12 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

put an end to it. I and mine shall perish off the face of 
the earth,and we'll see whether the number of the damned 
can neither be increased nor diminished!" 

"Let us go, Marcus," said Alice, "I can stand it no 
longer." 

"He is raving mad. We can do no good. I am too 
late, too late!" and there was a tremble in Marcus' voice 
as he said it. 

From the jail they went to the unfortunate man's 
family. The wife was in the greatest distress. She told 
them how her husband had brooded for a long time on 
religious questions, and how at last he had used violence 
against them. "Last night was the worst," she said. 
"When he came home from work, he would have no sup- 
per, but sat glaring like a madman at us all. Suddenly, 
he sprang to his feet, grasped the bread knife, and 
shouted, Til begin with the youngest!' and made a dash 
for the baby. In the tumult which followed, the neigh- 
bors came in, and he was prevented from doing any seri- 
ous harm; but it was all so awful!" 

Marcus could say but little, either to the distracted 
mother or to Alice as they walked home that night. The 
only remark about Henry Sanford was, that he had found 
a rotten plank in the imaginative pleasure boat, and not 
knowing how to avert the expected disaster, it had turned 
his mind; but Alice failed to get the meaning of the fig- 
ure, as she had that of the parable. 

The night following the visit to the jail was passed 
restlessly by Marcus King. He was up with the first 
gray light in the east, and out in the woods above the 
town of Hungerton. He loved the freedom and quiet of 
the forest, besides it was better than to muse in the 



MARCUS KING, MORMOM. 13 

close library at home. It would not do to undermine his 
health. With loss of bodily strength might come weak- 
ness of spiritual power, and he might be called upon any 
day now to exercise that to its ntmost capacity. The 
inevitable was before him. He was sure of that. He 
would have to resign his pastorate, and that at no distant 
day; but if he would have the power to sell all he had for 
the pearl he had found, why, that was a thing God only 
knew. 

The birds know the value of the morning. Then they 
are always out in full force, and that morning they 
greeted the early visitor with a wild chorus of melody; 
and Marcits envied the happy little hearts, so free from 
care and responsibility. Seated at last on a mossy rock, 
Marcus watched the sun come up. Was his own sun ris- 
ing or setting? Then he thought of his friend Henry 
Sanford, confined in a dismal cell, his limbs bound with 
fetters; worst of all, he was deprived of that most pre- 
cious of gifts, his reason. What had brought him to such 
a state? Reasoning on religion, his own religion, the 
religion which he had been expounding to his congrega- 
tion Sabbath after Sabbath. The demented man had 
repeated one of the articles of the Westminster Confes- 
sion, which was their articles of faith and rule of prac- 
tice. Some men were predestined to everlasting life, 
and others to everlasting death, "and their number is so 
certain and definite that it cannot be either increased or 
diminished." If that be true, why preach any longer? 
Of what use were efforts to bring souls unto Christ? The 
whole number one way or the other had been irrevocably 
fixed. It was the height of folly for him or any other 
preacher to try to overturn the unalterable decree of the 



14 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

Almighty. There was much reason in Henry Sanford's 
unreasonable mind. 

It was an abominable doctrine, and who could tell 
what misery and pain of spirit it had brought to the 
human race! Henry Sanford was an example, and was 
not he, Marcus King the preacher, answerable in part for 
his condition? 

Marcus climbed further up the hill, and from a clear- 
ing in the forest he saw the town at his feet. It was a 
beautiful place, and not the least fair was his own home 
and the church wherein he was to preach that very day. 
The vines had climbed up over the windows, protecting 
them from the hot summer sun. The flower beds in the 
lawn at the side of the church showed the skill of the 
gardener in the diamonds and circles and crosses. The 
broad, slow-flowing river half encircled the town and then 
disappeared behind the green hills. 

And here he was, the Reverend Marcus King, think- 
ing seriously of forsaking all this and becoming a Mor- 
mon. Think of it, a Mormon! One of a despised, hated 
and ridiculed sect- Was it worth it? And there was 
Alice, Alice who loved him, and whom he loved. But she 
was a good, pure, sensible girl. He would explain it all to 
her, and she would not forsake him. They were to be 
married next month. With her as his wife, the passage 
through the rocky channel could be borne. If all others 
forsook him, surely she would not. Thus he reasoned 
until the church bells rang up from below and called him 
back to the present. Once more he would preach. One 
Sabbath more he would parform his accustomed duty, and 
that would be the end. So he walked home with that 
purpose fixed. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 15 



CHAPTER 2. 

The Mormon missionary, Elder James, continued to 
be a frequent visitor at the home of the Reverend Marcus 
King. An intimate friendship had grown up between 
them, and they already treated each other as brothers. 
Elder James was a plain, simple man, a little older than 
Marcus, not learned in the schools, but thoroughly con- 
versant with the scriptures. His language was often 
faulty, when measured by the rules of grammar. His 
coat was not strictly of the ministerial cut; and alto- 
gether his manner was awkward and smattered consider- 
ably of the backwoods. 

One evening during the week following the Sunday 
last mentioned, Elder James was at the clergyman's resi- 
dence. They had been considering some Gospel subjects, 
and the missionary had been relating some of his exper- 
iences on the wild plains of the West. 

"Mr. King," said the Elder, "you may wonder why 
such an uneducated, unpolished man as I should be sent 
out to preach the Gospel; but the truth is that we all go 
as the call finds us, both the learned and the unlearned 
I mean in regard to worldly wisdom. As for me, I have 
had very little chance for schooling. You know some of 
our history in Ohio, Missouri, and Illinois. I, with my par- 
ents, have been through it all, and you can understand what 
chances I could have amid continuous mobbings and driv- 
ings and confusion; and then, the last few years have 
been spent in the heart of the great American desert, 
trying to force bread from a barren waste. My face is 
yet tanned from exposure, and my hands have not yet lost 



16 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

their callousness. But for all that, my friend, we have 
the pure Gospel of Jesus Christ, and what is more, divine 
authority to teach it." 

"I say amen to that," replied Marcus. He went to 
the table, and picking up a small volume, opened it and 
said: k 'Would you like to know what I had to do to become 
a minister? what all who preach in our church must do, 
before they can become ministers? Well, here it is, stated 
plainly in our rules of discipline. First, we must be grad- 
uates of some college; second, take a two years' course in 
divinity; then pass a critical examination; and at last be 
taken for a time on trial; and all this, because as it here 
reads, it is highly reproachful to religion, and dangerous 
to the church to entrust the ministry to weak and ignor- 
ant man/ What do you think of that?" 

* 'I think that 'God hath chosen the foolish things of 
the earth to confound the wise,' even as he did in days of 
old when he called simple fishermen directly from their 
nets to be ministers of the Gospel. Mind you, I do not 
depreciate an education. A scholarly man, if he would 
let God use him, would certainly be a shining shaft in 
God's hand; but it has been the experience of all time that 
the Almighty has worked with the weak things of the 
world. They are more pliable in his hand. Not that the 
servants of the Lord will always remain weak, though they 
must remain humble. 

"To change the subject," said Marcus, "how would 
you like to preach in the church next Sunday?" 

"I would like nothing better, providing it is with 
everybody's consent." 

'Well, I don't know about that. I would have to 
take the responsibility. I am going to resign. I can't 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 17 

stand this double dealing any longer; but I would like to 
hear you explain your principles in your simple way to my 
congregation, preach a sermon like the one you gave at 
the school house in Willow the other evening. How would 
it do, if, after I make my explanations and reasons for my 
action, I call upon you to explain the first principles?" 

"No; it would be taking undue advantage of the peo- 
ple. We have had meetings here in your town, we have 
distributed tracts to every house that would receive one. 
We have given them every opportunity. Your plan would 
only bring on opposition." 

"Yes; I ran see it. I had, friend James, made up 
my mind to preach no more, but I must give my reasons 
for resigning, anc 1 I'm going to do it next Sunday." 

"You have considered well the step you are taking? 
You know the consequences?" 

"Yes, to both your questions. I have been three 
months now thinking about it. I am going to test your 
promise. 'For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain 
the whole world, and lose his own soul?' As for the con- 
sequence, I know my act will make a sensation, but I 
cannot help that. I must follow the light as God reveals 
it to me. God must help me in the result. Brother, 
pray for me that I may have strength to go through the 
ordeal." 

Could Marcus King have taken two others with him, 
he would cheerfully have faced the world. One of these 
was his mother and the other was Alice Merton. He had 
carefully introduced the new doctrines to them both, 
placing tracts and books in their hands to read; but usually 
they had treated them as trifling things not to be taken 
seriously. His mother had received the Mormon Elder 



18 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

kindly at first, but when his visits continued and Marcus 
had him to dinner nearly every day, she had objected. 

"I don't want him here,'' she had said with some 
warmth. "It is the talk of the town already, that you, 
Marcus, who should be a defender of the people against 
impostors and wicked men, take into your very home a 
member of the vile Mormon sect. What is it coming to? 
Are w 3 to be disgraced? Has he won. you over to his per- 
nicious faith?'' 

Marcus had tried to explain matters, but when she 
found that he was actually in sympathy with the Mormon, 
and that he defended him, she had been overcome 
with emotion. The same scene had been repeated again 
and again until Marcus plainly saw that further reasonings 
would be useless. 

As for Alice Merton, Marcus loved her as he had 
loved no other woman, but he had decided what to choose 
between love and duty. ' 'Seek ye first the kingdom of 
God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be 
added unto you," was a promise which he meant to prove. 
He had not talked much with her on his changed views; 
and she, seemingly, did not get any meaning from the 
little figures of speech which he had used. She had partly 
assented to some of the views expressed in the pamphlets 
he had given her, but the fact that they had come from a 
source so ' 'foul as Mormonism' ' was enough to make them 
of no consequence. 

One day when they had been out sailing on the river, 
he had asked her if she would have loved him just the 
same had he not been a preacher, but just a common 
laborer, say, for example, a mason or a farmer. She had 
laughed heartily at the question, and had taken her 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 19 

sailor hat and had fanned his red face. He had pressed 
her for an answer, and she had said, how could she know. 
Then, doubtless, they never would have met. 

"But suppose I should now resign my pastorate and 
turn farmer, a real farmer I mean, to wear overalls and 
work in the fields, would you marry me next month as 
you have promised?" He had not smiled, but seemed to 
mean what he said, and the tears had come into the blue 
eyes of Alice. 

"You are cruel," she had said, 

"Forgive me if you think so, Alice; but I ask you 
the question in all earnestness. It may come to that yet. 
We know not what life has before us. My Alice loves 
me and will be mine, whatever befalls, will she not?" 
And she had yielded her head into his arm, and had whis- 
pered "Yes." 

On Friday afternoon Marcus had finished the outlines 
of what he should say the next Sabbath. He could not 
bring himself to write it out in full. He had thought to 
speak to various leading members of his congregation 
about the step he was to take, so that it would not be 
such a surprise; but that might bring on an opposition 
that would prevent him from saying anything, and he 
wanted to make the explanation to the whole congrega- 
tion. So he said not a word, not even to his brethren in 
the church. 

That Friday evening he called on Alice. The time 
was opportune. Mr. Merton was away on business, and 
Mrs. Merton had retired with a headache. They would 
be alone, and Marcus could speak the plain truth undis- 
turbed. Alice looked her best. The dress of soft white, 
the roses in her bosom and hair, the quiet, saddened 



20 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

smile on the fair face all this beauty went to Marcus 
with a force that made his heart throb *ith pain. 

Marcus could not hide his emotion, try as he would. 

"What is the matter?" she asked, as he took her 
hands. They sat on the sofa, and he looked into her face 
for a long time. Then he said: 

"Alice, I am going to resign my pastorate next Sun- 
day." 

She said nothing, but her hands trembled. 

' 'I am going to be plain Mr. King. Will that make 
any difference in your love?" 

"No; if that is all. I will love Farmer Marcus King 
the same as the Reverend Marcus King. My word and 
promise is the same." 

"But, darling, you suspect more than that. You can 
guess by this time why I am compelled to resign. '' 

"What should I know? You have never told me." 

"I have found that my position is a false one. My 
authority as a servant of God is an assumed one; the doc- 
trines I have been teaching, that is some of them, are not 
true. God has opened my eyes to a greater light, and 
Alice, my darling, I am compelled to accept that," 

"And that light is Mormonism?" said Alice, whose 
face was ashen gray. 

"Yes; it is known by that name, but in truth, it is 
the pure Gospel of Jesus Christ. Listen, Alice, oh, listen 
t ome ," she had turned away her head "do not con- 
demn me; do not reject the light. We will pray God 
together. He will open your eyes as He has mine. We 
will begin our new life together, stand by each other 
through the trials that will come. 0, Alice, you cannot 
conceive of the beauty and the grandeur this new light 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 21 

has opened up to me, will open up to you, my darling. 
You may not fully understand it now, but you will Alice, 
I cannot go out in the cold world without you." 

She did not cry out, she did not weep; her love had 
changed to fierce resentfulness; her tears had turned to 
ice. 

' 'Ah, yes; I see it all now; you are going to join the 
Mormons." 

"I know that is a harsh and evil-sounding word, but 
if you could only understand the truth, Alice, it would 
lose that aspect." 

''I hate the word, Marcus. The brand of the devil 
clings to it. I shrink from it as I do from perdition. Do 
not name it again!" 

Then is it all over between us, Alice? you love me no 
longer? You will not be my wife?" 

' 'Marcus King, a Mormon, I cannot, will not marry. 
Be any other honest thing on earth and I will hold good 
my promise. Descend to the lowest depth of the com- 
moner, be a farmer, a hod carrier, and I will be true to 
you, but but th'at other never Marcus, never! 1 ' 

He saw that it was useless. His hope was gone; and 
yet he loved her, loved her more than ever. They had 
both arisen, and now they stood facing each other. 

Then a power seemed to come to him, a power not of 
human origin. He took her hands again, and she made 
no resistance. He looked steadily into her eyes, and as 
he gazed they softened. Tears slowly filled them, and the 
whole marble form relaxed. He clasped her in his arms, 
and he was hardly conscious of what he said : 

"Darling, darling, you are mine, my very own, for 



22 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

time and for eternity. None but I can own you. Re- 
member that, Alice, remember it. You are mine!" 

He kissed her again and again, then gently laying 
her on the sofa, he passed from theroom. 



CHAPTER III. 

The Rev. Marcus King's congregation was the larg- 
est in the town of Hungerton. Lately it had been unusu- 
ally large, owing, as some said, to his peculiar preaching; 
so that Sabbath when he meant to resign his position, 
Marcus found many people in attendance. 

It was a beautiful day, and quite cool. The church 
and its surroundings looked their best. The people smiled 
and greeted each other, and were happy. Marcus came 
in exactly at the time to begin. The usual forms of song 
and prayer were completed, and Marcus stepped up to the 
pulpit. The congregation were as still as death when 
they saw their pastor pale and seemingly aged in a week. 
He had no Bible, no manuscript, only a slip of paper be- 
fore him. His voice was low and full of emotion, as he 
began to speak: 

' 'My friends, for twenty years did my father oc- 
cupy this place, and expounded, with the light that God 
gave him, the Scriptures of His word. I have filled the 
position now nearly a year, and I hope I shall not be 
recreant to any trust by the action I shall take before 
you this day. Now, in the presence of you, my friends, 
I informally resign my position as your spiritual guide 
and advisor. Later in the day I shall formally hand my 
resignation to the elders of the church." 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 23 

A hum of surprise swept through the congregation. 
A load seemed lifted from the shoulders of Marcus King. 
Color came back to his face, and he spoke again with a 
clear, ringing voice : 

"My friends, you are surprised, of course; and I hope 
you will pardon me for not sparing you this ordeal. I 
wish to explain to you why I have taken this step, why I 
have thought it necessary to divest myself of the ministe- 
rial office, and I hope you, my friends, will bear with me 
in my short explanations. I will offend some of you; but 
that I cannot help. I have a position to defend, I have 
arguments to give, but I cannot go into detail at this 
time. If any of you desire further talk with me on any 
points I advance today, I shall be pleased to meet you at 
any time. 

' 'First, then, I have come to this conclusion, that 
there has been and is today a universal apostasy from the 
pure Gospel of Christ. This falling away reaches to all 
sects and denominations of the Christian religion, our own 
being no exception. 

"This conclusion has been arrived at by carefully con- 
sidering the following facts: The Scriptures plainly pre- 
dict such a falling away. Even as early as Christ's time, 
'The kingdom of heaven suffered violence, and the violent 
took it by force.' The early persecutors of the church 
killed the apostles and propehts, and none were appointed 
in their place. The pagans of Greece and Rome ingrafted 
their rites aud doctrines onto the pure vine. This actual 
change in the simple ordinances of the Gospel to conform 
to pagan ceremonies can be traced historically. Shortly 
after the world was in spiritual darkness for over eight 
hundred years. As the Church of England puts it: 'Laity 



^4 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

and clergy, learned and unlearned, all ages and sects and 
degrees have been drowned in abominable idolatry.' The 
Reformation of Luther and Calvin did not bring back the 
pure Gospel of Jesus. None of the Reformers claimed 
any authority from heaven to this effect. They simply 
broke the power of Rome. The fruits of all churches to- 
day are not what they were in primitive times. Faith 
apparently has lost its power to save. 

"So much for a general statement. Now I wish to 
justify myself by pointing out what I consider errors in 
our own confession of faith. I shall take them in their 
order as they come in this book," and he reached out and 
opened a small volume. 

"Regarding the Scripture, this book says: 'The 
whole council of God concerning all things necessary for 
His own glory, man's salvation, faith and life, is either 
expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary 
consequence may be deducted from it; unto which noth- 
ing is at any time to be added whether by new revelation 
of the Spirit or traditions of men.' This statement virtu- 
ally closes the mouth of God. What is man that he 
should dictate to the Almighty? 

"I can no longer believe that God is a being without 
body, parts or passions, as this confession teaches, neither 
that the Godhead is 'three persons of one substance,' 
because that is a contradiction of terms. 

"The passage on predestination is familiar to you all. 
I shall not read it. I believe the doctrine to be false in 
the sense here stated. I have come to see that it is an 
awful thing to say that some men are fore- ordained to 
hell, and that they cannot help themselves. I do not 
believe that God takes pleasure in electing some to ever- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 25 

lasting punishment; I do not think such an act 
wou^d manifest any of His glory. The doctrine annihilates 
the agency of man, and destroys the divine right of 
choice. My friends, if you wish to see a practical work- 
ing of this teaching, go visit our dear friend Henry San- 
ford, in Hunger! on jail. 

"I cannot believe that God mide the earth from 
nothing. Truth is reason, and reason teaches me differ- 
ently. 

"I do not now believe in the total depravity of the 
human race. We are the children of God. The offspring 
of an all-good parent cannot be wholly inclined to evil 
as this creed teaches. 

"I have ceased to believe in this book's teachings of 
the calling and election of men, and especially of infants. 
Believing, as I do, that men have the freedom to choose 
good or evil, it naturally follows that I must believe that 
man can fall from grace. 

"This confession declares that baptism is not necessary 
to salvation; still it claims that this sacrament is the door 
into the church. This is inconsistent. 

"I shall read the passage about synods and councils: 
'All synods and councils since the Apostles' time, * * * 
may have erred; therefore they are not to be made the 
rule of faith and practice.' I understand scripture to be 
made when holy men speak or write under the influence 
of the Holy Ghost. We must come to one of two conclu- 
sions regarding synods and councils: either the men who 
composed them were not in possession of the Holy Ghost, 
or else this Divine Comforter has lost its power. I cannot 
believe the latter. 

"I do not believe in the literal hell-fire here spoken of. 



26 MARCUS KL\ T G, MORMON. 

4 'Our system of religion makes no provisions for the 
salvation of the heathen. I think it lacks in that. 

"Our church has not the organization of the first 
church, with Prophets, Apostles, etc. 

"Our church bars simple men from preaching the 
Gospel. Christ chose His ministers from the poor and 
unlearned. And at last, to put an end to this painful array, 
neither I, nor my fellow ministers, have been called of 
God as was Aaron, therefore I have no authority to preach 
the Gospel and to administarin its saving ordinances." 

At this point some members of the congregation 
passed out. 

"My friends, I hope you will bear with me a few min- 
utes longer. By what I have said, you may now think I 
have become a rank infidel. That is not so. I believe in 
the Scriptures and in the power of God to save, more 
than ever. And now, if I have taken away from 
any of you the staff which has supported you, I wish to 
give you a stronger, a better one. I do not believe that 
a man should tear down another's house, unless he has a 
better one into which to invite him. 

' 'My dear friends, I have found that which the mer- 
chant In the parable sold all he had to purchase. I am 
also selling all I own to secure this prize. 1 wish to tell 
you of it, that as many of you as desire may also sell and 
buy. 

"I bear my testimony that God lives, that He has 
again spoken from the heavens and restored the Gospel in 
its purity, and that the authority to administer in the things 
of God has again been given to men in the flesh. The 
Gospel is now being preached. Its first principles are 
now, as formerly, faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, repent- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 27 

ance, baptism by immersion for the remission of sins, lay- 
ing on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost. The true 
Church of Christ has been again organized, with Apostles, 
Prophets and all the gifts and blessings which existed in 
the Church during Christ's and the Apostles' time. " 

A man arose in the congregation and asked the priv- 
ilege of putting a question to the pastor, which was 
granted. 

' 'This church you have been talking about, Mr. King, 
is it the Mormon Church? Is it the Mormons you have 
reference to as receiving this new revelation?" 

"Let me explain that," began the preacher, but the 
'questioner cut him short with: 

"Can you not answer me, yes or no?" 

"Yes; I have reference to the Church of Jesus Christ 
of Latter-day Saints, commonly known . as the Mormon 
Church." 

"I have had enough," said the man, with a wave of 
his hand to the congregation, half of whom arose with 
him and left the Church. Marcus said not a word, but 
stood in the pulpit until the last one who had any desire 
to leave had done so. Then he continued: 

"I expected nothing else. Had you stoned me in 
this pulpit, I should not have been surprised. We are 
steeped in prejudice against that about which evil is 
spoken, but about which we know nothing. We are not 
willing to prove all things and hold fast to that which is 
good, as Paul advised. The word Mormon, my friend, 
has about the same sound to our ears as the word Naza- 
rene had to the Jews. But I wish to tell you again be- 
fore I close that Mormonism is the truth. It will fill that 
void in your breast; it will answer your questions regard- 



28 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

ing life and death; it will give you clear conceptions of 
God; it will clear up many mysteries in the Scriptures; it 
will satisfy your soul; it will fill you with joy unspeakable. 
I can say no more. Investigate for yourselves; seek the 
Lord on the matter. God bless you all. Amen. We 
shall sing the doxology." 

A very few sang. Marcus uttered a short prayer, 
and the services were over. Not one stopped to shake 
hands with the minister. One or two lingered as if they 
would like to say something, but they, too, walked slowly 
away. Marcus gathered a few books and walked out. 
The deacon said nothing to him, but solemnly locked 
the doors. Marcus picked a flower from a heart-shaped 
bed on the lawn, softly closed the iron gate, and went 
home. 



CHAPTER IV. 

Thus it came about that Marcus King got rid of his 
titles of learning and supposed divinity and became plain 
Marcus King, Mormon; and to tell the truth, he was 
heartily glad to cast off the burden he had been carrying 
these many months. He felt as might the fabled Atlas, 
when he rolled the world from his o#n shoulders on to 
those of Hercules. His true position before God and the 
world was now clear; and even if he stood alone, as he 
had every reason to believe, still it was infinitely better 
than to continue to play the hypocrite. He might have 
kept his position, continued to "teach for doctrine the 
commandments of men" and kept the good- will and re- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 29 

spect of his friends, even though he did not believe in 
what he preached, but that he could not do. Others 
might have done it, many do it, but he could not. 

Neither Alice nor his mother had been at church to 
hear his last sermon. His action had been a terrible 
blow to both of them. All the night following, his mother 
had paced her room, and the efforts of Marcus to pacify 
her acted only as fuel to the flame of anger and mortifi- 
cation. Early next morning she came into the library 
where Marcus had spent the night. She was partially 
composed, but it was with great effort that she spoke. 

"I thought that I had a son who would be an honor to 
his dead father," she began; "but I now understand dif- 
ferent. Why have you brought ignominy on your par- 
ents, both the living and the dead?" 

' 'Mother, as I have said before, I have done nothing 
shameful it is no disgrace to do one's duty as God gives 
one the light. I know father, and I think that he. would 
have done the same had he been in my position." 

"And what will you do now?" 

"I don't know, mother." 

"I suppose you will go to Utah?" 

"Most likely, though that is not definite." 

"And how are you going?" 

"Well, mother, if I go, it will have to be like the 
rest of the Saints, across the Western Plains in a wagon 
or cart." 

"Yes, that's it. If you are not killed by Indians or 
the hardships of the journey, you will have to live a life of 
degradation among the Mormons. And here I shall be 
alone. 0, Marcus, don't go! Ycu will kill me, you will 
kill me!" 



30 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

She broke down and sobbed, and he paced back and 
forth by her. 

* 'Mother, do not try to persuade me to turn back 
now. I cannot do it. I tell you that some day you will 
see the need of this step. You may not see it now, but 
then you will bless me for it." 

To this scene were added many like it between moth- 
er and son, until both saw that no good came from them. 

The following Monday, the wonderful scene in the 
church of the Rev. Marcus King was the talk of the whole 
town. It was so unexpected, so new, and so awful that 
a minister of the Gospel should from the pulpit say such 
things against the church, and then come out in favor of 
Mormonism! Nothing in the history of the town had ever 
made such a stir. Groups of men stood on the street cor- 
ners ' and talked about it. The women went to their 
neighbors to tell and hear. The clerk forgot his customer 
in his eagerness to listen to the story. The carpenter 
sat on his bench, the blacksmith's fire went out, the 
baker's bread was burned, the seamstress' needle was stuck 
in the dress: Hungerton was all agog. 

Marcus did nut venture out that day, but towards 
evening he walked down to the river, and followed a street 
leading along the stream. 

A few people who recognized him in the twilight, 
stared at him blankly. On the outskirts of the town 
Marcus met Elder James, and together they walked along 
the country road. They had much to talk about. 

"I congratulate you, Mr. King," said the elder. "I 
heard your sermon yesterday." 

"What! were you there?" 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 31 

"Yes; I sat in the farther corner most of the time, 
and then got away without attracting much notice." 

"I think you had better remain quiet for a time. The 
people are very much worked up, and they lay the blame 
on you, you know." 

"I think I shall leave town tomorrow for a few days, 
at least. We have a meeting this evening, a private one, 
just a few Saints and friends whom we can trust. Will 
you come?" 

He would like nothing better; so after walking down 
the road some distance, they retraced their steps and 
entered a small dwelling. A few had already gathered. 
Some were strange to Marcus, while three were members 
of his former congregation. They were somewhat sur- 
prised to see him, but he followed Elder James' example 
and pressed them all by the hand. They all chatted freely 
together but in a subdued tone, as word had been brought 
that a mob would surely break up any meeting the Mor- 
mons might hold. Marcus saw that most of those 
present were of the poorer working class. He could not 
help contrasting his own position that evening with the 
one he had held but yesterday, 

The meeting was a very informal affair. Singing 
was dispensed with, but there was an opening prayer. 
Then Elder James talked for a few moments, and he was 
f ullowed by some members of the congregation who bore 
their testimonies to what they had experienced. One 
young woman, Eliza Dixon by name, stated that she had 
been to the church the day before and had heard Mr. 
King. She had always believed what he said about the 
generally accepted Christian doctrines, and when he told 
of new revelation and the restoration of the Gospel, she 



32 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

was glad because that was what she had been looking 
for. Even that morning she had sought out a friend 
whom she knew was acquainted with the Mormon mission- 
ary. She had been directed to Elder James, and they 
had had a long talk. She was ready for baptism, she 
said. 

One or two others followed in the same strain, and 
the elder asked Marcus if he desired to speak. At first 
he paid no, but afterwards arose and expressed his plea- 
sure in the meeting, It reminded him, he said, of what 
he had read of the primitive Christians when they met in 
secret places for fear of their persecutors. He had found 
the truth, and he thanked God for it. If his words yes- 
terday had caused one soul to come to the same knowl- 
edge, he had been amply repaid for the effort. 

After the meeting, a little band of men and women, 
with bundles of clothes in their hands, went silently down 
to the river. There, in the shadow of the trees, Elder 
James took them, one at a time, down into the water and 
baptized them. 

A few days afterwards Marcus was visited by a 
delegation of ministers. They came to labor with him 
and show him the error of his ways; kindly at first; but 
when he met their arguments boldly, they changed their 
manner to one of ridicule. They rehearsed to him the 
usual tales about Joseph Smith and the atrocious Mi r- 
mons, at all of which Marcus only smiled. The confer- 
ence ended very unsatisfactorily, a3 far as the ministers 
were concerned. 

Weeks passed. Marcus learned that Alice Merton 
had gone to visit friends in another state, to be absent 
all summer, so he heard no more of her. He came to no 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 33 

better understanding with his mother, and she had now 
no great objection to his leaving. Marcus and Elder 
James often counseled together. They both saw that it 
was useless for Marcus to stay where he was any longer. 
His influence was gone. He was now an outcast so far as 
Hungerton society was concerned. Marcus also got the 
spirit of gathering; he also knew that his future lay with 
the Latter-day Saints. From one view point, his upward 
career in the world had suddenly ceased, and he had been 
precipitated to the bottom. He must begin life anew, 
and begin at the bottom. The sooner he began the bet- 
ter; so it was good-bye to Hungerton and all its familiar 
scenes. There was an attraction westward, to the new 
Zion arising from out the great American desert, and 
Marcus made all preparation for the journey. 

On the train which bore him westward Marcus met 
an old college acquaintance, who was going on a vacation 
trip to his old home in Missouri before he settled down to 
his work. 

"You see," explained his friend, "I had a pretty fair 
position where I have been, but there wasn't enough 
salary in it. A person can't live on fifteen hundred 
a year and keep up appearances, you know. So I got a 
call from an adjoining church with a salary of two thou- 
sand dollars, and of course I accepted. I am going to 
arrange for my house, and you must come and see me 
when I get settled." 

"I fear I shall not be able you haven't heard no, 
of course you haven't; but I'm not a minister now; I've 
given it up I have resigned." 

"Why, what's the matter, Mark?" 

"Well, you know we used to have great times dis- 



34 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

cussing theology at school. You also know that we didn't 
believe half that was taught us. Still you and I and hun- 
dreds of others said nothing about our honest opinions, 
but sold our consciences for a salary. Some got a thou- 
sand, some fifteen hundred, and some more. I've quit 
it." 

His friend looked surpriseJ, and hardly knew what 
to say. 

"You're startled, of course, and shocked; but I'm 
not sorry; what I have lost in worldly things I have 
gained in heavenly. You don't understand that; of 
course not." Whereupon Marcus told him the whole his- 
tory of the past three months. 

His reverend friend leaned back in the car seat and 
said nothing. He seemed shocked beyond utterance. 
Marcus went on explaining to him the principles of Mor- 
monism, and he was not interrupted. Only once did he 
say quietly; 

"Friend Marcus, all that you have been saying about 
the 'principles of the Gospel' is all right enough in its 
place, but you know that we have placed too much em- 
phasis on creeds and dogmas. A true and living faith in 
Christ, a love of Christ, is, after all, the only essential. 
You surely could have taught that and kept your posi- 
tion. " 

"Yes, I know that theologians are drifting into the 
belief that articles of faith, creeds and doctrinal prin- 
ciples have nothing to do with Christ and the church; 
but I differ. Creeds are necessary, foundation principles 
are necessary. Christ taught them. Principles are the 
forerunners of practice. When creeds and doctrines are 
wrong, the fruits they bear are evil. Teach people cor- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 35 

rect principles and their lives will be all right, said Joseph 
Smith; and that doctrine is sound." 

"And so you are going to Utah?" asked his friend 
after a pause. 

"I'm going to try." 

"Well, Marcus, I can only hope that you'll get out of 
this alive. I don't know much about the Mormons, but 
father does. He helped to rid Missouri of them. My 
dear friend, I pity you." 

"Spare your tears, old boy. You may need them 
in your next sermon, especially if you speak of the dam- 
nation of the heathen, or the final state of l-he unregener- 
ated." 

That ended the talk. Marcus soon changed cars and 
his friend went on his own way. 

Marcus' destination was away out on the prairies of 
the west, where he would meet Elder James and prepare 
for the trip across the Plains to Salt Lake City. 



CHAPTER V. 

It was the latter part of July when he reached Iowa 
City, which was then the western terminus of the railroad 
and the fitting-out point. Of all the strange scenes which 
he had witnessed thus far, that at Iowa City was the 
most interesting and wonderful. Here for the first time 
he met a large number of his co-religionists. At first 
he experienced a shock to his feelings at sight of their 
personal appearance, but when he understood that they 
had traveled long distances from various quarters of the 
earth, his good sense told him that they could not have 



36 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

the appearance of stay-at-home Christians in the town of 
Hungerton, for instance. When he arrived, there were at 
least six hundred Mormons, most of whom were from 
Great Britain, and expected to get to the Great Salt 
Lake Valley that fall. How were they to do it? They 
seemed to be extremely poor. There were very few 
horses, mules, or even oxen, and less wagons. 

As they took a walk out among the camp, Elder 
James said: "Here you see an answer to your question. 
See what these men are busy with! These two wheeled 
carts are to carry their clothing and provisions." 

"And who are to pull the carts?" asked Marcus. 

"They themselves, the men, perhaps the women." 

"How far is it to the Valley?" 

"Thirteen hundred miles." 

"And I understand there are burning deserts and 
rough mountains to cross?" 

"Oh, yes, more than one." 

"And they will have to walk every step of the way?" 

"Yes; most of them. Hundreds have done it, and 
no doubt these will also do it. You see, they must get to 
the Valley. They can't stay here. This company will 
start in a few days. It will be rather late, but they will 
be able to make it, if they have moderate luck." 

"But, Brother James, I can't see how they can do it. 
It will be awful the women and children!" 

''You've read of the Pilgrims and the MayflowerT' 

"Yes; but, great heavens, that was nothing to com- 
pare with this!" 

Marcus was soon made acquainted with the leaders 
of the people, whom he found to be intelligent men of 
Elder James' type. By their advice he bought a yoke of 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 37 

oxen, a wagon, provisions, and other necessary articles. 
Elder James helped him. He gave the young man some 
practical lessons in yoking and controlling his oxen. It 
was all extremely new and strange, but Marcus went to 
work in earnest, and soon mastered the art of swinging 
his buckskin whip with a "gee" or a "haw." Elder 
James was not going west; but he arranged with a family 
to do the cooking for Marcus, that he might be freed 
from that responsibility. 

A few days after his arrival at Iowa City, the hand- 
cart company was ready to be off. That morning there was 
a scene, a scene in which mingled the ludicrous and piti- 
able: the six hundred men, women, and children on the 
move westward. Each family, or group of four or five, 
had a cart in which were loaded their provisions and 
clothing. The carts were simple affairs: two wheels with 
light frames over the axles and with short shafts. At the 
end of the shafts were cross bars which projected out on 
each side. Here the "human horses" attached themselves 
and started off. There were a few wagons along, drawn 
by oxen. These carried provisions and some of the heavy 
baggage. 

Marcus went up to a cart that had stopped. They 
were adjusting the load, and there was some discussion as 
to the best position of the pullers. The cart was owned 
by a poor English family, and was not a very substantial 
one. The axles were of wood and the boxes of leather. 
The father got in the shafts to be the main propelling 
power, his wife took her place by his side and grasped the 
cross bar, and a fifteen year old son went on the other 
side. A grown daughter' had arranged a kind of harness 
of leather straps which she fastened - over her shoulders 



38 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

and then to the end of the shafts. Thus away they 
went, while a little three year old boy sat on top of the 
load, shouting in great glee. 

Marcus walked with them some distance. The whole 
scene had a strangeness about it. Everybody seemed hap- 
py enough. They laughed and shouted to each other, 
and made their jokes at each other's expense; but Marcus 
could not help thinking of the thirteen hundred miles 
before them. 

"Come, brother, where's your cart?" some one 
greeted Marcus; and he turned to see the broad smile of 
an English girl, who was pulling very little on a cart. Two 
young fellows were doing the work. ''Hi'm the driver, 
ye know, "she laughed. "What do you think of my 
'osses?" 

"They'll do," replied Marcus, "I think they will take 
you through. " 

But all did not take the matter so pleasantly. A 
number were discontented and grumb'ed. Others said 
they would not be able to make it, and Marcus looked 
into their sad eyes and believed them. It seemed worse 
for the older people and the children. Some of the latter 
soon got tired and cried, and then the father, or per- 
chance the older brother, would lift the child up on his 
shoulders and carry the extra weight as he pulled his 
load. 

And all of these people had left their native land for 
this! Most of them hai been tossed about for long 
weeks on the ocean to get to this! Many had left com- 
fortable homes to travel footsore and weary across these 
plains! Yes, there would be no more rest for many of 
them until they laid their weary bodies down under the 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 39 

sod of the prairie! And it had all been done for the love 
of the Gospel, for the love of the light which had made 
him also an outcast from home and a wanderer among 
strange peoples and lands. 

Marcus turned and went back. When he looked 
around again, the train was hidden by a rise in the road, 
and only the thin cloud of dust which arose above it 
showed their westward path. 



CHAPTER VI. 

About a week after the departure of the hand-cart 
company, Marcus started with the wagon train. The 
last act before leaving was to mail a letter to his mother. 
The season was late, but the company was small and they 
could travel rapidly. Marcus soon learned to accommo- 
date himself to his surroundings. He followed the ex- 
ample of the other teamsters and walked by the wagon 
most of the time, although he could have ridden. Elder 
James had explained to the captain of the company Mar- 
cus King's former position, and he had made it as easy as 
possible for the ex-minister. Had Marcus known this he 
would have resented it. He felt as though he wanted to 
work with the rest. He was no better than they, even 
though his whole life up to that time had been one of 
bodily ease, and his training unfit for the life of a % pi- 
oneer. 

After the day's journey, Marcus was ofttimes ex- 
tremely tired; and when the tents were pitched and the 
fires were lighted (which was only when they had plenty 
of wood and there was no danger of Indians), he never had 



40 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

strength to join in any merriment. At first, the dancing 
in which they often indulged, seemed strange to Marcus. 
Why should religious people dance, especially on such a 
journey? After the hard day's toil, out would come a 
violin, a space on the grass would be cleared, and a dozen 
couples merrily whirled into the strains of the weird mu- 
sic. He had once expressed his doubt as to its propriety 
to a brother teamster who had crossed the plains a num- 
ber of times, and the explanation had been given that it 
was a good thing to drive away "the blues." They had 
been standing looking at a merry crowd, and at that mo- 
ment a good-looking, roguish maiden stepped up to them, 
and said that she was looking for a partner. The team- 
ster had instantly taken the girl's arm and slipped it into 
Maicus', and before he krew what he was doing, he was 
whirling away with her over the soft grass. The truth 
was, as he afterward learned, that the girl had taken the 
bold step that she might say she had danced with a very 
sanctimonious sectarian minister. After that, she was 
not the only one with whom he stepped to the time of the 
music. 

But they did not always dance during the evenings. 
There were a good many fine singers in the company, and 
the songs of Zion often rang out over the still, moon- 
lighted prairies. They always rested on Sunday and had 
religious services. Marcus was interested in the strange 
serinons often delivered, and he could not help contrast- 
ing them with the smoothly-flowing, logically- arranged 
discourses which he and his fellow ministers had been 
trained to give. There were a number in the company who 
were returning 'home from a two or three years' mission, 
and the experiences which they related were extremely 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 41 

interesting. Marcus was asked to speak a number of 
times. Dressed in a blue "jumper," and his corduroy 
trousers tucked into the tops of long boots,, he mounted 
the dry-goods box and did the best he could under his 
changed environments. One day he told them his history 
how he came to a knowledge of the truth. After the 
meeting, an elderly lady came up to him with tears in her 
eyes. 

"Dear brother, God bless you," she said. "1 left a 
boy at home a boy about your age. He is in the semin- 
ary learning to be a Methodist preacher. He couldn't 
see the truth, though I talked with him about the Gos- 
pel." 

She clung to his hands and looked the young man in 
the face, while the tears slowly trickled down the care- 
worn furrows in her cheeks. 

"And you also have a mother?" she asked. 

"Yes; I have a mother at home." She still clung to 
his hands; and a big lump arose in his throat. If ever 
he had seen a saintly face, he thought, this must be one 
before him. His eyes grew dim; he could not see the 
wagons, or cattle, or tents; the rolling prairie faded as a 
dissolving view, and another picture came into its place, 
a wonderful, ever-changing picture. It was his mother 
and Alice, fair Alice, with a sweet, sad smile; the old 
home embedded in trees and flowers; the cosy study with 
walls of b^oks; the church and upturned faces; the hills 
covered with forests; the river, bending in broad silvery 
bands around the town of Hungerton; and every trifling 
detail mingled and mixed, then stood out in clear distinc- 
tiveness in this wonderful kaleidoscopic picture. 



42 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

' 'Brother King, will you come with me to my tent? 1 ' 
said the sister. "I do want to talk with you." 

"Yes, I shall be pleased to." 

She led the way to a tent. The sun was sinking 
through a hazy sky. The wild odor of the plains pervaded 
the evening air. The camp lay as a speck of life on that 
vast level surface, even as a lone ship in mid-ocean. Be- 
fore some of the tents small fires blazed, and there were 
the usual preparations for the evening meal. 

' 'Janet, Brother King has come to eat supper with 
us." 

The girl busy at the fire suddenly straightened her- 
self. Her mother's greeting startled her, and she looked 
somewhat confused. 

"I invited him to come and see us, and of course 
he'll stay to supper. I want to have a talk with him, he 
reminds me so much of your brother David. Haven't you 
met my daughter before, Brother King?" 

"Not to speak to her, I think," said Marcus. 

"I am pleased to meet you. Brother King," said the 
girl, giving him a warm shake of the hand. 

"Can you find a seat? We left our chairs at home 
you know. Here, take this box let me put this quilt 
on it." 

. Marcus looked, nearly stared, at the girl. She wore 
a dress of light calico, which became her as though it 
had been of a much finer material, fitting perfectly the 
full, rounded, but not large figure. Her face was full of 
warm color, and she had red hair. The novelist would 
have called it auburn, or golden, or some such evading 
term, but in truth it was plain red ; and it was just the 
proper color, too. Any other shade would not have 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 43 

blended so naturally and beautifully with that clear, rosy 
skin. The girl's faint, pleasant smile and easy, graceful 
manner as she moved about the camp, also drew the 
young man's attention. 

''Now then, dear folks," said Marcus, perceiving 
that they were making some extra effort for his comfort, 
"do not put yourself to any inconvenience on my account. 
Though this life is new to me, if I mistake not, it is 
equally foreign to you." 

"Yes," said the mother, "we made great sacrifices to 
get to Zion this! year, and this mode of traveling is hard 
on old people like me but mind, I'm not complaining; if I 
may but lay my bones with the people of God, I shall be 
content." 

4 'Mother's always talking of laying down her bones, 
Brother King, when the fact is, that she's strong and will 
live many years yet. She stands this trip nearly as well 
as I do." * 

The meal of milk and bread and fried bacon was 
spread out on a cloth in the tent, and bundles and boxes 
were brought upon which to sit. Sister Harmon (for 
that was her name) also brought out a tin of preserves. 

"Where did you say you came from, Brother King?" 
asked the mother. 

Marcus told her. 

"Why, Janet, we lived within ten miles of Brother 
King all our lives. We came from Newton, ten miles from 
Hungerton. You know the place." 

"Yes," said he, "I've been at Newton a number of 
times; but I'm not acquainted much there." 

"Well, it's interesting, anyway, isn't it, Janet?" 

"It's quite strange," answered Janet. "Have an- 



44 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

other piece of bread, Brother King. Ashes got in my 
bake pan, and it's not very nice looking, but" 

"Don't offer a- y excuses, sister; I think I can un- 
derstand all your difficulties in the way of cooking." 

"Well, well,'' the mother continued to repeat, "and 
so you're from Hungerton. Strange that I should not 
have seen you. I've been there a number of times. Do 
you remember to have met Brother King, Janet?" 

<4 No, I do not now remember, mother. Have some of 
this preserve. This came all the way from home." 

And so they talked and ate. Sister Harmcn told of 
her son David who ridiculed Mormonism. What a time they 
had had with him, and how angry he had been when he 
learned that they were going to Utah. Janet said but 
little, and Marcus tried as best he could to cheer them. 
He found that he was not alone in trials. No doubt these 
two women had passed through much tribulation for the 
truth. Perhaps every soul in that camp had made a sac- 
rifice, many of them greater than his own. His visit 
that evening helped Marcus to be more contented with 
his lot. Hf was not such a hero, after all. 

Westward, westward the emigrant train moved, 
rolling in long procession across the prairie, slowly climb- 
ing the hills and coming down the inclines with rattle and 
confusion. Every night the wagons were placed in a 
circle forming a corral or enclosure, into which the cattle 
were driven next morniag to be yoked. The daily routine 
of the same things, day after day, week after week, be- 
gan to be irksome to Marcus King. At the end of a 
month, it seemed to him that they might have passed half 
way around the globe. 

Still westward they moved. The season was getting 



MARCUS KING, MORMOM. 45 

late, and they would have to hurry. The nights began to 
be cold, and a number of the last streams had a coating 
of ice. Marcus was sunburnt and roughened and shaggy 
enough for any frontiersman. He might now have walked 
through the streets of Hungerton without being recog- 
nized. 

He was always free and friendly with every member 
of that company, but still there are always preferences. 
He seemed to find the best companionship in Sister Har- 
mon and her daughter. He soon learned that they 
were of a class akin to the one to which he had belonged. 
Their modes of living, their thoughts and tastes, had been 
like his own. They were intelligent. Janet had been to 
the best schools. Marcus had no doubt that the now cal- 
loused hands could better bring sweet sounds from ivory 
keys. This preference was natural enough. It takes 
time to make radical changes in thought and action, and 
Marcus could not be blamed for ofttimes passing the 
wilder, more boisterous group to have a quiet chat with 
Janet and her mother. 

One morning Janet came to where Marcus was walk- 
ing beside his wagon. Her mocher had not been well 
enough to walk, and it had been lonesome without her. 

"I'm so glad you came over," Marcus said, when 
she tried to give some excuse for coming. "I'm glad to 
see you, Janet. Walk along with me awhile and we'll 
have a talk." 

There had been a brisk shower the night before, and 
the road did not give out its usual cloud of dust. The air 
was cool, and it was a pleasure to begin the day's jour- 
ney. Janet took off her large straw hat, that the cool 
breeze might better blow into her warm face. 



46 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"Janet, I think you might have let your mother fin- 
ish that story the other evening," began the young man. 

Janet got the whip and proceeded to give it a number 
of fire-cracker pops; but she did not answer Marcus. 

"It promised to be a regular romance. I always did 
admire a good story, and I haven't read one for so long, 
that I fairly hunger for one. You tell me it, Janet." 

"It was nothing, indeed it was. Mama colored it so. 
I \\asnearly out of patience with her." 

"Which was wrong." 

"Of course it was; I was sorry for it. Did you see 
the handcart company start from Iowa City?" 

Marcus smiled at her turning of the subject. 

"Yes; and the captain said yesterday that it is not 
far ahead." 

"I've wondered all along why we do not overtake 
them." 

"Brother Brown said that a handcart company of 
strong young people can beat any ox-team across the 
Plains; but I understand this company just in front has 
many old people, and they are having a hard time. 

Then he told her of the start he had witnessed at 
Iowa City. "It would have been extremely funny had it 
not been for the sadness of the scene. Your mother was 
just saying, the other evening, when you interrupted her, 
that" 

"Brother King, how is it that we haven't seen any 
Indians? Our friends at home said we would be scalped 
sure, but I told them that no Indian would dare to touch 
my hair he'd burn his fingers if he did. 

"I hadn't heard that red-skins were afraid of of, 
that is " 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 47 

"Of red hair. How stupid you are! What's the 
use of being so delicate about telling the truth. It's red. 
and I know it, and you know it. I'm not one of those 
people who do not like to be told their hair is red." 

"Well, for my part, I think you are sensible in that; 
besides some people look better with red hair. I don't 
think the Creator made any mistake. I believe this sub- 
ject had a bearing -on the story your mother was telling.'' 

"It hadn't; not a bit." 

"Well, how did it happen, then that " 

"I must go to mother. She may need me." 

"No; she doesn't. See, she's sitting up in the 
wagon, and talking to the driver. I'll warrant she's tell- 
ing him the rest of that story." 

"O, Brother King, you're an awful man!'* 

Then they both laughed and walked on for a few min- 
utes in silence. 

"Shall I tell you that story?" she asked. 

'Tes; do." 

"Well, once upon a time " 

"Now, don't compose as you go along." 

''Don't interrupt me, or I shall lose the thread of the 
narrative." 

"Excuse me. '' 

"Once upon a time a young man and a young woman 
who had red hair were engaged to be married. The 
young woman became a 'Mormon' and the young man 
wouldn't have her." 

"Well?" 

"That 'sail." 

"That's pretty short." 

"Yea; the engagement was pretty short." 



48 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"You don't seem to be sorry over it." 

' Tm not a bit sorry. I'm glad it turned out as it 
has." 

"Won't you get on my wagon and ride? You must 
be tired." 

"Oh, no; I'm not. I want to hear your story now." 

"My story?" 

"Yes, your story; now don't deny that you have 
one." 

"No, Janet, I'll not deny it. I have one and I'll tell 
it to you." 

Their laughter had ceased. 

"It's very strange our two stories. Janet, if I 
hadn't become a 'Mormon' I would now have been a 
married man, and had for a wife the sweetest and best 
girl inHungerton." 

"It must have been hard for you. You cared, I can 
see that." 

"Cared! I wish I hadn't. I wish I didn't now care; 
but I don't know that I should say that; it may be wrong. 
Yes, Janet, Alice Merton is a good girl, but of course she 
doesn't understand. I would gladly have left all the rest 
if only Alice had come with me." 

Marcus had become so earnest that Janet could say 
nothing. At this point the train came in sight of an im- 
mense herd of buffaloes, They had been to the river for 
water, and were now heading for their feed grounds again. 
The great moving mass seemed to be coming directly upon 
the long train. Apparently, the train of wagons was 
directly in the path of the herd. As the animals came 
nearer, the captain of the train came riding on a mule 
and shouted orders to the drivers. The front wagons 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 49 

were hurried forward as fast as possible while the captain 
rode by Marcus, and the very next wagon behind him was 
ordered to turn about as quickly as possible. This move- 
ment made a large gap in the train, for which the leaders 
of the buffaloes now made. The earth fairly shook as on 
they came. 

Janet stood still for an instant, then with a cry 
turned to run back across the gap. 

"Mother, mother's back there!" she said. 

Marcus caught her and forcibly held her. "Your 
mother's all right," he said. ''The buif aloes will tramp 
you under foot. Come, get back here." 

The foremost animals were now in the opening, and 
the herd pressed closely behind. They swept through 
with great shaggy heads, wild eyes, and dilated nostrils- 
The drivers stood guard over the nearest cattle, to pre- 
vent any stampede. As the last stragglers went galloping 
by, pop, pop, went the rifles, and a buffalo dropped not 
twenty yards from where Murcus was standing with Janet 
clinging to his arm. 

"I couldn't let that chance go by without getting 
some fresh meat," said the hunter, one of the teamsters. 

Janet was pale, and trembled violently. As soon as 
the wagons drove up again, she hastened to her mother, 
and there she had a good cry. 

That evening the whole company had fresh buffalo 
steak for supper, Marcus came to Sister Harmon's tent, 
as he said, to see what practical value Janet's course in 
the cocking school had been; but that evening after the 
company had gathered for prayers, and thanks had been 
given to God for His watch care that day, Marcus touched 
Janet's arm and said: 



50 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"Those^ things we were talking about today let it 
be only between you and me." 

"Yes; of course," she answered. 
"Then good night." 
"Good night." 



CHAPTER VII. 

The company lay at camp in the hills of Wyoming 
All that day the weather had been cold, and now a sharp 
wind was blowing from the north. The sky was full of 
clouds, and there were all indications of a storm, and a 
snowstorm at that. What if winter should burst upon 
them now while they were yet a month's travel from the 
valley? 

Marcus King began to realize what it meant to be a 
Mormon in that day. Their company had been well sup- 
plied and were not as yet suifering, but there was no tell- 
ing what the future would bring. The hand-cart company 
was just ahead. The newly-made graves which the wagon 
company passed, indicated the condition of affairs with 
the people in front. Marcus thought of that start in 
Iowa. What they must have suffered! What they must 
yet suffer to reach their destination! 

That evening Marcus took his gun and walked out 
over some low hills skirting the road. It was a wild even- 
ing. The clouds hurried across the shining moon. He had 
heard the cry of a wolf and made his way towards it. He 
could see the creature sitting on a rocky knoll, and his 
unearthly howl added to the night's dismalness. Present- 
ly another cry come upon the wind. The wolf saw Marcus 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 51 

and trotted slowly off. The strange sound come again 
surely it was the cry of a human being. Marcus instantly 
thought of Indians, and turned towards camp, when, from 
out of a ravine into which the wolf had been looking, came 
the distinct cry of a child. Marcus paused and peered 
down into the shadows. He thought he discerned some- 
thing under a bank, but it might be an Indian camp or 
perhaps a party of hostile savages. 

The wind came up in great sweeps from the ravine, 
carrying with it that human cry. Marcus was in doubt. 
Perhaps some belated emigrant was perishing. The night 
was coming on, and no one could live through it unpro- 
tected. That cry was of a child. Marcus went cautious- 
ly forward down the ravine. Presently the moon cast a 
hurried stream of light, and the outlines of a cart were 
plainly seen. Marcus quickened his steps, and from un- 
der the bank came the faint cry of "Mama, Mama." 

"Hallo," shouted Marcus. 

There was no answer, but the child ceased its crying. 

He leaped down the bank, and as he did so, a woman 
started to her feet. She had a child in her arms. In the 
shelter of the bank sat a man. His knees were drawn up 
and his head rested upon them. The cart lay overturned 
under the bank. 

"Who are you? What is the matter?" asked Marcus 
hurriedly. 

The woman seemed to be half asleep. The man did 
not stir. Marcus saw that something must be done im- 
mediately. He went up to the woman and shook her vio- 
lently. 

"Come, you're freezing to death here. Come, wake 
up and move. Our camp is not far away." 



52 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

She at last realized her position, and with a glad cry 
began to talk to her child. She shook the man by the 
shoulders. 

"Get up, John," she said. "Someone's come to help 
us. Camp's not far off. Come, John, 0, John, get up. 
We're saved, John 0, please sir, I'm afraid he's gone. 
Help me get him up? He's freezing to death, 0, John, 
here's help!" 

The child wailed piteously, and the mother tried to 
soothe it by pressing it closely to her breast. Marcus 
pulled off his coat and wrapped it around the child. Then 
he took hold of the man, and by the woman's help, they 
got him back to consciousness. 

Another chance for life nerved the woman to 
strength. She helped Marcus right the cart, and then 
worked diligently with her husband, who, when he at last 
realized where, he was, took hold of the cart and walked 
behind, as the woman and Marcus pulled it towards 
camp. 

The woman explained in a few broken sentences that 
they had somehow become separated from the company, 
and having left the road, the cart had fallen over the 
bank. They had tried to lift it up again, but they were 
both so weak that they could not. Thus they had waited 
for help, and had sat down to rest, which would have been 
their last had not Marcus come to their assistance. 

When within hailing distance of the camp, Marcus 
shouted, and a guard came out who helped them into 
camp. Marcus took them to his tent and then sent for 
Janet to come and help take care of them. By the light 
of the tent lantern, Marcus saw that the woman's face 
was familiar to him, but he could not place her. After 



MARCUS KING,"MORMON. 53 

they had been made as comfortable as possible he asked 
her: 

" Where have I seen you before?" 

"At Hungerton. My name is Eliza Dixon, and you 
are Marcus King." 

Such was the case. That last sermon of his in the 
Hungerton church had moved this woman to investigate 
and embrace the Gospel. She had told her husband and 
he had believed; and here they were perishing in the wil- 
derness. 

Next morning Marcus went to the captain's tent and 
said to him: 

"Those people I brought to camp last night well, it 
will be impossible for them to go on with their hand-cart. 
The man can hardly walk and the woman is not much bet- 
ter; and then the child" 

"Well, Brother King, what can we do?" 

"If you have no objection, they can take my outfit, 
and I will take their cart and go on with the hand-cart 
company." 

. The captain tenderly placed his hand on the speaker's 
shoulder and said: 

"Do you know what a sacrifice that would mean to 
you?" 

"I think so, at least, partly; but I cannot do other- 
wise." 

"Then all right, and may the Lord be with you." 

When Marcus told his rescued friends of his purpose, 
at first they cried for joy; but then, when they understood 
its full meaning, they tried to prevail on him not to do so. 
It would be too great a sacrifice. But Marcus was firm in 
his purpose. 



54 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

Early that same day the wagon company overtook the 
hand- carts, and as the wagons went on Marcus stopped 
with Jchn Dixon's hand-cart in chrge. Janet and her 
mother looked mutely at him, but could say nothing; and 
as he took their hands to say good- by, the captain came 
up. Placing one hand on Janet's shoulder and another on 
Marcus', he said: 

"Brother King, by this shall all men know that you 
are a disciple of Christ you have the true sign, the true 
love of Christ. God bless you." 

No mortal pen can fully describe that hand-cart jour- 
ney from the bleak hills of Wyoming to the valley of the 
Great Salt Lake; and the pen that writes these words 
shall not attempt it but just a word: 

Winter came on in all its fury, and through the snow 
and sleet the poor half-frozen, half-starved travelers 
dragged their carts along. Every day some one gave up 
the struggle, and was laid under the frozen sod by the 
wayside and there left. Husbands left wives, wives left 
husbands, parents left children, and children left parents 
and the broken remnant still struggled westward. They 
climbed the hills, they waded the freezing streams. The 
piercing wind blew through their thread-bare clothing. 
They starved, they froze, they died. Had not help come 
from the valley, they would all have surely perished. 

Marcus King reached the lowest possible stage of 
human misery and suffering on that journey; but he had 
one thought which sustained him. It was the thought of 
Christ in the garden and on tha cross. He suffered for 
others, and He was God's Son. Marcus, in a way, was 
following in his Master's footsteps. "Take up thy cross 
and follow me, " rang in his ears, and through all that 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 55 

desperate struggle for existence it was the only anchor to 
his soul. And yet through all that terrible misery, there 
was a peac3 in his breast. Whence it came Marcus was 
in no state to reason out; but afterwards he knew: The 
performing of a sublime duty carries with it a peace of 
soul which surpasseth understanding. 

********* 

A beautiful spring morning crept over the rugged 
Wasatch Mountains and into the valley of the Great Salt 
Lake, as Marcus King walked slowly up the path wind- 
ing along the sage-brush plains. His face was pale, his 
features pinched, and his steps were those of a sick man. 
When he reached the bank of the small stream, he sat 
down on it, bared his head, and sat looking out over the 
valley towards the distant mountains. 

Every morning for a week he had taken this walk, 
and it had done him much good. His strength was com- 
ing back to him, and with his strength came renewed 
hopes and new aspirations. 

Marcus had certainly been near death's door. For 
two months since his arrival he had been hovering between 
this world and the next, and one more experience had 
been added to him, namely, the power of the Priesthood. 
Time and again the Elders of the Church had anointed 
him with oil and prayed for him, and instantly he had felt 
that once more he had been snatched from the hands of 
the destroyer. It had surely and literally been a battle 
between life and death with him; but now he had the vic- 
tory, and he was on the way to a speedy restoration to 
his usual health. 

When spring came at last and he could get out of 
doors, the strangeness of the country came more forcibly 



56 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

to him: the grand, rugged, treeless mountains; the wild, 
bare bench lands; and the marshes near the lake. In his 
walk that spring morning he counted the little, low, log 
huts of the settlement and found the total to be seven- 
teen; and none of them were older than five years. They 
stood on both sides of a broad, straight street, along both 
sides of which rows of trees had already been planted. 
As yet, little of the surrounding land had been cleared of 
the gray sagebrush. The small garden plats by the side 
of the cabins were just sprouting out into long, green 
rows. 

Marcus went back home quite tired that morning. He 
sat down on a bench on the south side of the house under a 
roof of freshly-cut willows and cottonwoods. Eliza Dixon 
was busy getting breakfast. Marcus had his home with 
John and Eliza, and they had done for him all that loving 
hearts could devise and willing hands could carry out. The 
poverty of that winter and spring is well known in history, 
and these people suffered with the rest. 

"I'm going to help you plant potatoes this afternoon, 
John," said Marcus to his friend that morning. 

* 'Are you strong enough?" 

'I can do a little; besides, I must learn to be a far- 
mer. You folks don't pay me anything for all those 
sermons I preach you, and so I must make my living at 
something else." He still tried to be pleasant and make 
his jokes. 

"Well, if you want to begin," said John, "I'll give 
you something easy." From the house he brought a 
sack of potatoes, placed them on the bench by Marcus' 
side and proceeded to give him a lesson on how to cut 
them into proper sizes. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 57 

"But these are small enough as they are, it seems to 
me," said Marcus. 

"Yes; but we must make them reach as far as pos- 
sible. Now, you'll have to be careful. Have no more 
than two eyes to each piece, and take care not to cut an 
eye so that it will be spoiled." 

Just as Marcus had become thoroughly interested 
in his work, Janet Harmon came around the corner of 
the house. She carried something in her hands, covered 
by an apron. The meeting was unexpected, it seemed, as 
Janet stopped and the color came into her face. Janet 
had also changed. Wind and weather had played sad 
havoc with her clear, beautiful skin. The round face 
was peaked and the large eyes seemed sunken. Her hair 
hung in two long braids down her back. 

' 'Good morning, Janet, I thought you had gone to the 
city." 

"Yes; but I've come back; and I thought you went 
you take a walk every morning about this time." 

"Yes; but I also came back, you see." They laughed. 

"Are you peeling potatoes for dinner?" she asked. 
"Where do you get such luxuries?" 

1 'Oh, these are not to cook, but to plant. I was just 
thinking, Janet, if I had all the potato peeling that 
our cook at Hungerton used to provide for her pig, what 
a big field of potatoes I could plant. I wonder if peel- 
ings would grow, anyway?" 

Janet stepped in at the open door, placed what was 
under the apron on the table, and then, as Eliza was not 
in, she went back to Marcus. 

"Sit down," he said, "and tell me all the news." 

She handed him two letters, both from his mother, 



58 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

and he read them aloud to her. They were not very 
cheering letters. The mother still considered herself dis- 
graced by her son's action. Still she felt sure that every- 
body would forgive him even yet if he was alive and could 
get back. Alice had been to see her, and had stayed with 
her much of the time during the winter. Alice was a 
great comfort to her. She never mentioned his name, 
but still, through all the trying ordeal the girl loved her 
wayward son. 

"Poor mother, and poor Alice," and that was about 
all he could say. 

The potatoes were neglected for a few moments. 
Then -he turned to the girl at his side and said; 

"Janet, you should have seen Alice. You ought to 
be acquainted with her. I know you would have liked 
her; you couldn't help it, no more than I can help loving 
her yet. She's the sweetest and best but there, I've 
told you that so often before." 

Janet rose hurriedly. 

"I'm glad to see you so well, Brother King, and I 
hope you'll soon recover entirely. Goodby." 

In a moment she was away, and Marcus soon went to 
work again. When Eliza called him to breakfast, he sat 
down as usual on his own raw-hide chair, and when he 
raised his head after the blessing he caught sight of the 
extra bowl by the side of his plate. 

"Hello, what's this?" he exclaimed, as he peered 
into it. "Pudding, rice pudding! Can I believe my 
eyes?" 

"If you doubt them, try your palate," said Eliza. 

"But where did you get your rice? And I verily be- 
lieve there are rasins in it." 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 59 

"Janet brought it," said she. 

"Ah, I see. This is what she had under her apron. 
Janet's a good soul, isn't she." 

"I think Janet's a good girl." 

"Well, I'm going to taste this," said Marcus. 

"Oh, it's yours. 

' 'Not all of it, I'm not quite that greedy." 

u But Janet brought it for you." 

"You don't know that. You were out. Here, each 
must have a taste;" and amid protestations, Marcus di- 
vided the tasty morsel between them. 

That afternoon Marcus planted in the plowed furrow 
the potatoes he had cut. He was very careful to place 
them with the eye side up and exactly eighteen inches 
apart. While John plowed them under, Marcus rested. 
The cut potatoes brought his thoughts back to the potato 
peelings, and they in a long string led him to Hungerton 
and into the kitchen of the parsonage. From the cook to 
his mother, and from his mother to Aline was a natural 
channel of thought: but how his mind leaped from Alice 
Merton to rice puddings can never be explained by any 
known law of psychology. From rice puddings to Janet 
Harmon was an easy stage, coming so closely on the 
scenes of the morning. 

Marcus sat on the upturned bucket used in carrying 
potatoes, and thought about these things. He knew now 
that Janet thought well of him. What was the use of 
trying to hide the fact. He now remembered many little 
scenes which were unmistakable, ever since he had met 
her in their camp on the plains; but strange as it may 
seem, the plain truth was that he had not thought of 
Janet as a prospective wife. She who had all the time 



60 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

held that position was back in Hungerton. She still held 
it without a rival. His love for Alice was as strong as 
ever, and during all his strange experiences of the recent 
past, she had been the sole queen of his heart. He had 
not reasoned much on the matter, or he might have seen 
the utter foolishness of retaining any hope of Alice; but 
once or twice that little scene in his study, that last one 
with her, came to him and he heard himself say: 

"You are mine, mine!" 

It is a slow process to direct the channels of thought 
into entirely new regions, but Marcus began to think very 
kindly of his sister in the cause. Can a young man be 
entirely unmoved when he finds that a good, fair, young 
woman cares much for him? 

"All right, Marcus, we're through," shouted John. 
"Let's go to the house." 

Marcus nearly fell off the bucket. While he had 
been soliloquizing, John had planted and plowed until the 
work was finished, and he had said never a word to the 
man on the bucket. 



CHAPTER VIII. 

Sometimes as early as July the Wasatch Mountains 
are clothed in the Indian summer mist, thin and blue, 
making an idyl-land of the deep ravines, the towering 
crags, the pine-clad recesses, and the bold promontories. 
Such was that afternoon when Marcus, leading little Ida 
Dixon by the hand, walked up the hillside to get a better 
view. From the bold, rugged outlines of the rear moun- 
tains his eye followed their trend northward to where 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 61 

they seemed to sink lower and lower, and the gray veiling 
became thicker, until at last the blue sky and the smoke- 
covered earth blended. 

Little Ida ran hither and thither hunting for the few 
wild flowers which sometimes were found in the shaded 
protection of the sage-brush; but his eyes were on the 
mountains. Never before had nature so entered his soul 
or communed so plainly with him. The cabins of the set- 
tlement were hidden behind a hill, so that whichever way 
he looked, not a sign of human habitation or human work- 
manship could be seen. He was utterly alone, save the 
little child that toddled beside him. ' 

Marcus was now well and quite strong. His face 
was no longer pale, but browned by the sharp wind and 
sun. He certainly had changed much since he had left 
Hungerton; and that difference was as marked as the dif- 
ference between the gentle, gr^ss- covered hills of his 
native state and the element- beaten mountains before 
him. 

From out some lonely recess of the hills came the 
mournful notes of the wild pigeon. Who, being alone in 
the hills, and hearing those peculiarly penetrating 
cadences echoing from some unseen source, has not sat 
down on the ground, and felt as though he could stay 
there forever! And if, perchance the emotions within 
swelled and overflowed in tears, those tears were not 
wholly of joy, neither of sorrow, but of some strange fas- 
cinating emotion that stirred the soul to its depths! 

Little Ida also sat on the ground, but she had no 
deeper concern than to arrange her flowers. They both 
sat on the hillside; the creek of cold water tumbled over 
its rocky bed in the ravine below. Presently a cow came 



62 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

down the path along the stream, and following it came 
Janet Harmon. She carried her sunbonnet in her hand, 
regardless of the hot sun. Her dress was of many- times 
washed and patched calico; her shoes were ragged. 

Marcus shouted to her from the hillside, and she 
paused and looked up. 

''Wait a moment, Janet; I want to talk to you," he 
said. 

"I must take the cow home." 

"You're not in a great hurry, are you?" 

"No but " and the girl looked down at her shoes 
and dress. Marcus saw the act. 

"Then let the cow feed on that grass by the creek. 
I want to talk to somebody." 

"You have Ida." 

"Come, here's a green bank. Ida is busy with her 
flowers. Janet, don't be uneasy about how you look in 
your costume. We understand each other. We under- 
stand our conditions, and we know that we are the same 
beings whether we are in silks or broadcloths or in rags. 
What difference can a piece of cloth make in the intrinsic 
value of a man or a woman ?'' 

"You are right," she said. "I am foolish to care 
about such things, but habit and life training aie not easy 
to change." 

Willows lined the bank of the creek, and they sat in 
their shade. Ida neglected her flowers and began weav- 
ing a necklace of wiregrass. Janet threw off her sun- 
bonnet, and Marcus fanned his face with his old straw 
hat. The croek splashed musically by, and the cow was 
perfectly satisfied. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 63 

"What did you want to say to me?" Janet asked 
after the pause had been long enough. 

"Oh, I just wanted to talk to someone. To think to 
one's self doesn't give the satisfaction that talking does. 
These rough mountains, the hazy air, and all this wildness 
seem to affect me today. Janet, this is wonderful, isn't 
it?" 

"What, the scenery?" 

"No; I mean our life here, or history for the past 
yoar. Think of it! la college educated man, a re- 
spected minister and preacher, and now here! You, whose 
life seemed to be opening up so gloriously, to be sur- 
rounded by wealth and culture, ease and comfort, and 
now you are here also, living in a log house with a dirt 
roof and a mud floor, subsisting on the scantiest and 
coarsest of food, and thinking a rice pudding altogether 
too precious to eat yourself." 

Remember, Janet's hair was red; her cheeks were of 
the same color now. 

"I wonder if we have made a mistake, Janet." 

She looked him in the face to see if he meant it. "I 
haven't," she saicf. 

"No; neither of us has. This Gospel of Christ is 
worth it all. We have had many testimonies, and I can 
see more clearly every day the true meaning of life. 
Mormonism is in close touch with nature. We Mormons 
are pretty well nature's children." 

"Yes, especially until we can get s^me factories 
started," said Janet, looking at a great rend in her shoe. 

"I don't mean that at all," he laughed. "I mean 
that there is a strikingly close relationship between Mor- 
monism and the known laws of nature; and also I see now 



64 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

that we as God's children must learn a great many lessons 
in nature's school. In this school God is the Master. 
Whatever He provides is true religion, and true religion 
is Mormonism." 

"I've thought of the same thing," said Janet, as she 
reached up and pulled down a willow. "Who would ever 
have dreamed two years ago that I should spin yarn, knit 
stockings, sew carpet rags, wash, bake, (though I haven't 
done much baking lately) scrub, drive cows, milk, churn, 
and delight in buttermilk but now that's my life as 
though I had been born and raised to it." 

The cow was out of sight now and Janet arose to 
look for it. Ida lay asleep on the grass. Marcus lifted 
her in his arms and they went dovn the road. Soon the 
settlement came into view. The sun was low in the west. 
A covered wagon left a trail of dust through the street. 
The voices of playing children came to them through the 
still afternoon air. 

"You must remember," he said, "that we are pio- 
neers. Here, if any place on the globe, is the primeval 
earth. We are the beginners. Everything around us is 
glaringly new. We find no ancient marks of ancestry, no 
shrines made sacred by centuries of human experiences. 
Here are no crumbling walls overgrown with ivy;" 

"Here is nothing except that which we make with our 
own hands," she added. 

"You put it exactly. If we want grass, we must 
sow it and then water it. If we want a tree, we must 
plant it. If we want a house, we must build it. But, 
Janet, we are empire founders. There will be some glory 
in that." 

"After we are dead." 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 65 

"Yes; certainly; perhaps it will be a long time after 
also; but ours is a quick age and who can tell even what 
one hundred years will bring!" 

They turned into the street. The cow had already 
found the corral. 

u Do you see that pile of logs?" asked Marcus, point- 
ing to the side of the road. "Well, that's my lot, and 
I'm going to start on a house tomorrow." 

"You have a good location," said she. 

A horseman came galloping toward them. In his 
hurried ride he passed them before they recognized that 
it was a young man of the settlement. He reined in his 
horse, rode back and said: 

"Have you heard the news?" 

''What news, Ted?" 

"Why, about the army. The President of the United 
States has send an army to Utah to straighten us out." 

"Impossible it must be a mistake." 

"No; the soldiers are on the road already." 

"But what have we done?" 

"Done? Well, ask dad. He was in Nauvoo," and 
the young man put spurs to his horse and went on with 
his message. 

"I must hurry home to mother," said Janet nervous- 
ly; and when Marcus set little Ida down in the road and 
took Janet's hand to say goodnight, he looked into her 
troubled face. 

'Do not fear, Janet;" he meant to speak some rjeas- 
suring word but he could find nothing better than; "I shall 
come over tonight. Take care of mother." 



66 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

CHAPTER IX. 

The man whom Marcus had engaged to help him build 
his house came next morning with his ax and saw. 

"I did not expect you, Brother Wood, " said Marcus. 
"We'll have no need for houses if an army is coming to 
kill us off." 

Brother Wood was a frontiersman. He had been 
through most of the experiences of the Church. He had 
built for himself two houses in Missouri, one in Illinois, 
and a number at the temporary stopping places across the 
plains; and now there were three which he had built in the 
settlement. He was an expert at constructing log houses, 
and he was not going to be stopped in his work because 
some soldiers were reported to be on the march to Utah. 

"Never you fear, Brother King," said he as he ran 
his fingers through his gray beard. "I've seen lots of 
soldiers before, and I don't count much on these no how. 
I heard Brother Brigham say that if our enemies would 
leave us alone for ten years, we'd ask no odds of 'em. It's 
ten years ago since he said that. I think the Lord '11 
tend to these fellers. Are ycu readj to go to work?" 

"Well, yes; but you see I thought I'd wait and see 
how it turned out; but if you say so, I'm with you." 

So that morning Marcus King's inheritance had a be- 
ginning. The stones for the corners were leveled, and 
the first round of logs laid on them. It was to be a two- 
roomed house, of good proportions with a "lean-to" at the 
back. 

"I've been wonderin' all morning," said the master 
mechanic, ' 'what you're wantin' with such a tony house 
as this, but now I see. You're goin' to git married.'' 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 67 

"Oh no; you're mistaken, Brother Wood. I haven't 
been thinking of that at all." 

'That's what all young fellers say; but you can't fool 
me. Janet's a mighty fine young wcman, even if she has 
red hair." 

"But you are really mistaken about that." 

"Do you mean to tell me that you're not goin' to 
marry Janet Harmon?" 

"I have no such intentions at present." 

"Then all I can say to you is that you're actin' pretty 
foolish in sparkin' the gal;'' and the speaker went on with 
his sawing. 

"Is the impression out that Janet and I are keeping 
company, Brother Wood?" 

"Ob, I don't know what other people think. But I've 
got ears and eyes, and I can tell you, young man, that if 
you don't marry Janet, there'll be a good heart broken 
why don't you git married, anyway? There's no sense in 
a young feller like you goin' around single, when there's 
a dozen girls right here in this settlement just achin' to 
git you." 

Marcus laughed at that. But after all he could not 
help thinking about the man's remarks about Janet. Of 
course he could marry her, he liked her well enough, but 
there was Alice, and his vow, or prophecy whatever he 
might cdl it. It teemed to stand as a bar between him 
and any other woman. If he had been unwise towards 
Janet, it ought perhaps, to cease, and in the future he 
would be more careful. Janet had had trouble enough 
already, and so had he he could sympathize with her. 
***** 

History has dealt fully with the events in Utah dur- 



68 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

ing that period when the troops of the United States 
marched into her peaceful settlements to put down an 
imaginary revolt, and this personal narrative will not to 
any extent dwell on these scenes. Some time a great 
poet will find ample material for his songs in the scenes 
of those days. Some day a great writer will find all he 
needs in the heart histories of those trying hours. 

When the people had decided to defend themselves, 
there were hurried preparations in all the settlements 
north and south. Old muskets, swords, and pistols were 
brought out and cleaned. Those who had any knowledge 
of military tactics drilled the awkward squads of farmers. 
Marcus would have gone to Echo canyon, but it was 
decided that John Dixon would be better able to stand 
the hardships of the winter, so Marcus stayed at home. 
It is well known how the troops wintered in the bleak 
mountains, and that in the spring they came marching 
into Salt Lake valley; how when they entered the villages 
they found them deserted; and how, after quartering in 
the territory for some time, they marched back again to 
the more bloody fields of the South. 

It was no great trial to Marcus to move south. It 
was far worse for some who had large families, and who 
had had only a short rest, as it were, from their wander- 
ings. Janet's mother cried when she left her little cabin. 

"I thought I might have laid my bones down in 
peace," she sobbed. 

But there was no great hardship in that excursion 
south,and when they all came back again in July and began 
to occupy their homes and work as usual,many looked upon 
it as a little out that had done them good. With new 
energy they digged and built, planted and harvested. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 69 

God smiled in favor upon them, and they prospered in the 

land as never before. 

* ****** 

The settlement where Marcus King located soon 
extended its borders and received the name of Hernia. 
Other streets were added to the east and to the west of 
the main one; then cross streets were surveyed, cutting 
the place into square blocks. New settlers kept coming 
in, and more land was broken and planted. The water 
ditches were enlarged and extended. Then a store was 
built where general merchandise was to be had, hauled 
from the Missouri River by wagons. Prices were high, it 
may be believed. 

The winter following the move, Marcus taught school 
in Hernia. Two departments were organized. One was 
a primary, over which Janet Harmon presided; the more 
advanced was in charge of Marcus. Marcus invited all 
who desired to attend, and many married people took advan- 
tage of the opportunity to add to their limited store of book 
learning. In the evening he taught an advanced class. 
This work, and especially the evening classes, brought 
Marcus somewhat back to his former atmosphere, with 
the great difference in his favor of knowing that what he 
was teaching was the truth, and having the blessed assur- 
ance of a satisfied conscience, and of doing a noble work 
in the community. The lack of books and the scarcity of 
aids in teaching taxed the instructors to the utmost, but 
when spring came, and all who could work must, all 
agreed that the winter had been spent most profitably. 
Janet, however, continued to meet with her flock of chil- 
dren and give them a daily lesson on the blackboard in the 
school house. 



70 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

One Sunday morning in early May, the people of 
Hernia were unusually active. President Brigham Young 
and some of the leading brethren were coming to hold 
meeting that day. It was a habit of the great leader to 
travel from settlement to settlement among the people, 
setting the Church in order, organizing quorums, layL.g 
out townsites, selecting sites for tabernacles and temples, 
and planning irrigation canals. His visits were always 
hailed with delight, and early that morning the children 
of Hernia had been to the hills to gather the few early 
flowers with which to decorate themselves. The old bow- 
ery from last year had been repaired the day before. 

At nine o'clock the president's carriage was seen 
coming down the road, and soon the children toik their 
position in lines on each side of the street. As he rode 
through, he smiled and bowed to them, and they waved 
their flowers. The people soon began to gather under 
the bowery by the side of the meeting house. The plank 
benches were hard and without any backs, but many of 
the older people came early to get a seat in front. 

Ma v cus was only slightly acquainted with the presi- 
d" nt, but as Brother Brigham walked up to the stand he 
stopped and chatled with the young man for a few mom- 
ents. Then they all sarg: 

"0 ye mountains high, 

Where the clear blue sky 

Arches over the vales of the free." 

The president talked to them about the recent trials 
which the Church had been called to pass through; said 
that it had already proved a great blessing to them; they 
could now look forward to a steady growth both in tem- 
poral and spiritual affairs; and gave much good advice. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 71 

Some other speakers followed and the meeting closed for 
noon. 

In the afternoon the president occupied nearly all the 
time. 

. Marcus bad never heard such a sermon. It was not 
a rhetorically or logically arranged sermon, but it thrilled 
him nevertheless. He got a striking example of one who 
speaks, not as the Pharisees, but as one having authority. 
Towards its close the president said: "Now, my brethren 
and sisters, this branch has been in a somewhat disorgan- 
ized condition; and as it is, you are laboring under disad- 
vantages. You are now large enough to have a full ward 
organization, and we intend this afternoon to present to you 
the name of a man to be your bishop. He can then 
choose his counselors, and they can complete the organi- 
zation. Brother Thomas has been presiding temporarilly, 
and he has done his duty as far as I can find out. My 
mind has been free and open to the suggestions of the 
Spirit as to whom I should name as your bishop. Until I 
walked up to this stand this afternoon I was in doubt, but 
now I know." 

At such news, the congregation naturally became 
extremely attentive and expectant. Some had thought 
that a bishop would be presented to the meeting, but 
whom the man would be they could not tell. Half a dozen 
names had been mentioned, and among them Elder 
Thomas, who had presided thus far; but he was a very 
"slow" man, .and it was doubtful if he would be named. 

* 'Brother Marcus King," said the president," will 
you please come to the stand?" 

There was a murmur of voices as Marcus walked up 
to the platform. Marcus hkiself had no clear idea of 
what was coming. 



72 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"This is the man the Spirit has told me to name as 
your bishop. Brother King, tell us what you think of it;" 
and the president sat down, leaving Marcus to face the 
meeting. The audience became a blur to him. His head 
seemed to reel for an instant. The suddenness of the sit- 
uation had nearly stunned him. He stepped up to the 
table and said: 

"Brethren and sisters, this is as great a surprise to 
me as it is to you. My own feelings cry 'no, no/ but duty 
tells me I have no right to say that. I am willing to try 
anything that God or His servants may call me to, with 
the help of the Lord. Amen." 

He sat down, and the president arose. 

"All who favor Brother King as y)ur bishop and will 
support him with your faith, your prayers, and your 
works, make it manifest by raising the right hand." 

Every hand went up. 

1 'And now," continued the president, "there is an- 
other thing. I understand that Brother King is not a 
married man. It is hardly the proper thing for your 
bishop to set you such a bad example; and Brother King," 
turning around to him, "I charge you to get a wife, or 
two if you like, as soon as possible." 

At the close of the meeting, as friends shook his 
hand, Marcus saw Janet glide quietly past him and away 
before he could reach her. 



CHAPTER X. 

While at school Marcus remembered having read the 
saying of Paul to Timothy, that "if a man desire the of- 
fice of a bishop, he desireth a good work." He had asso- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 73 

dated the passage with his knowledge of bishops as he 
saw them in the various denominations. Then he had 
agreed with Paul. His highest ambition would certainly 
be reached, thought he, if he ever attained to that lofty 
position. But now he was a bishop, a real bishop in the 
Church of Christ. And how different it was to what his 
idea had been! He was simply the ecclesiastical head of 
possibly a hundred souls, poor and struggling in a new 
country to make a living; and he was one of them, work- 
ing daily in the fields for his own support. 

Though the new bishop was young, yet he was well 
liked by all. His counselors were much older than he, 
and so all classes were satisfied with the arrangement. 
Marcus took hold of his office with a vim, and soon had 
everything in the ward in good working order. Of course 
a few objected to some of his ''new-fangled ways" as they 
called them, and said that he was too new from the sec- 
tarian pulpit; but these grumblers were not many. 

Naturally, there was much talk of what Brother Brig- 
ham had said to Marcus about his getting married. Many 
were the jokes at his expense, but he laughed them all away. 
Of course, he meant to marry, he said, but he must be 
given time to think about such a serious matter. 

Though he would say it in a jocular way, he thought 
about it earnestly enough; and Alice was in his mind all 
the time. During the "Echo Canyon War" the mails had 
been very irregular, and news from Hungerton tad been 
scarce. He had written but one letter to Alice, but that 
had never been answered. She might never have received 
it, however, and that spring it was after he had become 
bishop he had written he* again, and sent her some new 
Mormon literature. In his last letter to his mother he 



74 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

had asked about Alice, but he heard nothing from her 
through that source, Alice having left Mrs. King some 
time during the winter. . 

It was middle of the summer before Marcus received 
more letters from the East. One was from his mother, 
but none from Alice. His mother had been very sick, was 
quite weak at that writing, and she told him not to be sur- 
prised if she wrote no more to him. "As regards Alice 
Merton," she wrote, "since she left Hungerton I have not 
heard much from her. She has lost all interest in me, I 
fear. You remember I told you of her father's financial 
failures, and ho\\ his business here has been closed. They 
are now living on their farm some distance from town; 
but, as I said, I hear scarcely anything from them. The 
last time I saw Alice she was driving in that old one- 
horse buggy of theirs, and there was a young fellow with 
her. It is rumored that they are quite intimate. Well, 
Alice is getting over her girl days, and I can not blame 
her for getting married if she has a good offer; but I had 
such hopes, Marcus Alice is such a good girl but there, 
what's the use of my writing of such matters. You no 
doubt care very little for her now, and there are plenty 
of girls in your town any one of whom would gladly marry 
the new bishop." 

On the whole, it was a depressing letter. Marcus 
worried considerably over its contents both as regards his 
mother and Alice. He might have to give up Alice, after 
all. At least, he could see no way by which she would 
ever become his wife, unless the hand of Providence over- 
ruled in a miraculous manner; but that she should be the 
wife of another hurt him sadly, pnd he obtained no p?ace 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 75 

of mind on that matter until he had gone to the All-wise 
and All- merciful and poured out his heart to Him. 

Meanwhile, Janet was in Salt Lake City. She had 
gone there directly after Marcus had been made Bishop, 
and had visited Hernia but a few times since. Marcus had 
neglected Janet. Being so occupied with his new duties, 
he had thought little about her. Now he realized that he 
had been negligent, and it became all the more glaring 
when considered with the fact that Janet had been so de- 
voted to him. If he must settled down to a married life, 
he knew of none better suited to him than Janet. He did 
not try to deceive himself. He did not love Janet Har- 
mon as he loved Alice Merton; but he thought a great 
deal of her, that was certain. 

And now rumors came to him about Janet in the city: 
She ''kept company" with a man who was not doing right, 
but was quarreling with the authorities of the Church . 
Marcus tried to see her on a number of his trips to the 
city, but he had failed. He did not place n,uch reliance in 
this talk, as he knew Janet and her opinions too well to 
suspect such things of her. 

One evening Marcus called on Sister Harmon to in- 
quire about Janet. The sister was knitting in the open 
doorway, at the same time watching the light fade from 
the western sky. She had aged much in the few years 
she had been in the West, and lately her health was fail- 
ing. It certainly seemed likely that she soon would have 
her wish fulfilled as regards laying down her bones in 
Zion. 

Marcus would not take the chair which she had vac- 
ated for him, but he sat down on a bench by the wall. 
The little room was one of the neatest that the Bishop 



76 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

ever went into in that settlement. With the extreme scar- 
city of anything that could be ustd to adorn or make 
comfort, it was a wonder that such a room could be made. 
Out of the commonest things Janet's skillful fingers had 
made neat ornaments. The clay floor had recently been 
hidden by one of sawn boards, and little strips of home- 
made carpet covered the boards not made white by scrub- 
bing. The cleanest and freshest white-wash covered the 
walls, where were hung a few cheap prints with frames of 
oak and autumn leaves. Shelves were lined with scalloped 
paper. In the little window behind the tiny panes of glass 
stood a row of cans filled with flowers: two or three ger- 
aniums, some pinks, and a few wild flowers. Marcus went 
up to them and pulled a small red blossom. 

"And so Janet doesn't come home often now?" said he. 

"No; she doesn't care to leave her place. And you 
know, Brother King, a girl of Janet's nature likes a little 
more society than there is here in Hernia." 

"Yes; I suppose so; but what about that rumor? Has 
she found a young man that cares for her?" 

"Yes; I think she has. There's no use denying that; 
at least he seems to think a great deal of her." 

"And does she like him?" 

"Well now, Brother King, I can't say. She's turned 
so strange lately that I can't understand the girl. I be- 
lieve that she thinks more of you yet than of anybody 
else." 

The needles stopped their busy click, and the old 
sister looked steadily at him with a smile. Marcus was 
trying to fasten to his jacket the flower he had picked. 

"I'm sorry, Sister Harmon that is, I suppose I 
haven't treated Janet quite right." 



MARCUS KING, MORMOM. 77 

"No; I don't think you have." 

"But you know my story, don't you? Janet does, 
and I thought you would understand." 

"Yes; Janet told me about your young lady that 
wouldn't have you after you became a Mormon. Janet 
was in the same fix but bygones are bygones with her." 

Marcus knew, however, that there was a difference in 
their cases. 

*' Where is Janet staying now? I'm going to town 
tomorrow and I should like to see her?" 

Sister Harmon went to the shelf and brought down a 
letter from which she took a slip of paper. A photo- 
graph also fell to the floor, 

"Oh yes; here's his picture," she said as she handed 
it to him. 

The face was a dear one to Marcus King. It was his 
old friend who had brought him the Gospel, Elder Robert 
James. 

"Do you know him?" she asked. 

''Yes; he preached the Gospel to me in Hungerton.' 

"Indeed! Well, now, that's interesting; but have 
you heard that he is on the back track, as they say?" 

"Yes; I've heard it, but I can hardly believe it of 
him. I must see him when I go to town. I haven't 
heard from him for a long time, and had no idea he was 
in Salt Lake." 

Marcus brought away with him a package for Janet 
from her mother, and a sharp pain in his heart for him- 
self, ' He lost no time in getting an early start for the 
city next morning. 

He found Elder James at work on his farm on the 
outskirts of the city, and when he took his hand and 



78 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

looked into his face, Marcus found that there was some 
truth in the rumor he had heard. The man spoke in a 
confused way, and his actions displayed a nervousness not 
natural to him. Of course he was pleased to see Marcus. 

'Til unhitch and we'll go to the house. Sister Har- 
mon is my housekeeper you know Janet Harmon, I be- 
lieve?" 

"We crossed the plains together, that is, part way, 
and she has lived in Hernia." 

"Yes; she has told me of you. You see, I lost my 
wife two years ago, and I must have someone to look after 
my two children. Janet does it splendidly. She's a fine 
woman. " 

The horses were unhitched from the plow, and they 
made for the stable, the two men following. 

"So this is your farm?" asked Marcus. "You've got 
a fine piece of land here." 

"Yes; it's a pretty good farm, but I've sold it." 

"Is that so?" 

"Yes; I'm going East in the spring. Tve an offer 
of a good position back in my native state, and I think 
I'd better go. I'm not wanted here any longer." 

"Why, what's the matter, Brother James?" 

"I'm finding too much fault, that's all. You haven't 
heard, perhaps, but the fact is that I am already as good 
as an outcast here. Things are not run right to my no- 
tion, and because I point it out, I am ostracized." 

"But, dear brother, the Gospel is the same, isn't it?" 

"Yes; I don't deny that, but Brigham is wrong." 

They came to the house, where they met Janet com- 
ing from the cellar with a pan of milk. At sight of Mar- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 79 

cus she nearly dropped it. "Look out," he said, "If I'm 
to have any of that for dinner." 

She was surprised, and also a little uneasy, Marcus 
thought. However, she busied herself with getting din- 
ner, and finding time once in a while to ask about matters 
in Hernia. 

At the table they asked and answered questions for 
some time regarding their doings since they hfc parted 
in Iowa City. This led on to their experiences in and 
around Hungerton, and Elder James asked about many of 
his friends, if Marcus had any news from them. The old- 
time light came into his eyes, and the old-time interest 
awakened when these missionary reminiscences were in- 
dulged in; and Marcus began to doubt his first conclusion?. 

"I live with John and Eliza Dixon in Hernia. They 
are still true to the faith as you taught it to them, 
Robert. Why don't you come out and see them?" 

"Well, I have often thought I would go out and see 
you all, but this trouble of mine has prevented me. I 
didn't think you would care to see me." 

"I will always be glad to see you, Robert. I can 
never forget what I owe you. I am trying to live up to 
the principles you taught me also. I know they are true 
and you know it, too." 

Robert's hand trembled as he pushed his hair from 
his forehead, and wiped away the dampness. 

"Yes," he said in a low, tremulous voice; "I know 
they are true. I don't deny them, Marcus, and I hope I 
never shall. The principles are all right, but " and 
here he raised his voice, "the authorities are wrong." 

"I shall nob try to show you the fallacy of that posi- 



80 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

tion. It seems altogether too strange for me to be your 
teacher." 

' 'Oh, chat's all right. You're a Bishop, you know, 
You stand in with Brigham and are all right." 

Marcus did not desire to quarrel with his old friend. 
He was too much pained for that. So they parted with a 
good spirit, and Marcus had him promise that he would 
visit his^riends in Hernia the next Sunday. 

Janet had said but little during the taik. The chil- 
dren came rushing in to get their dinner, and she busied 
herself with them. 

"You'll come, too, Janet," said Marcus. 

"I don't know I'd like to see Mother, but" 

"Let there be no 'buts' Janet. You must promise 
me to come. I want you to come, Janet." 

* 'Then I'll be there," she said. And her eyes fol- 
lowed him through the gate and up the road . 



CHAPTER XL 

The next Saturday Bishop King was irrigating corn 
when he saw a passing team stop at Harmon's, and Janet 
alight. He had doubted her coming at all, but here she 
was, a day ahead. 

That evening Marcus called. He smiled to himself 
as he brushed his coat, and put on his best tie, before 
going. It had been such a long time since he had done 
any ' 'dressing" to call on the ladies that the act now had 
a certain charm in it. 

Janet must have expected him. She was dressed 
better than he had ever seen her, and she reminded him 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 81 

of the first sight he had of her on the plains. Save for 
a sad expression that seemed to have made itself perma- 
nent in her face, she showed her peculiar beauty to advan- 
tage that evening. A little pang akin to jealousy shot 
through his breast. 

Janet had brought a few simple luxuries from the 
city, and mother and daughter were enjoying them at the 
table. 

"You're just in time," exclaimed the mother. 
"There's just a taste of this cake left for you." 

"We're fast getting back to old conditions," said he, 
"when we can have sugar in our cake. This was sweet- 
ened with sugar, wasn't it, Janet?" 

Janet nodded. 

"Yes; and when we can dress like that," said the 
mother, pointing to Janet. 

"Now, Mother, you know that this is the cheapest 
kind of stuff." 

"It must be in the making," said Marcus, "for I as- 
sure you, it looks pretty fine." 

"I'm going to get some cooler milk," said the girl, as 
she went to the cellar with a tin pail. 

"Brother James will be here tomorrow, won't he?" 
Marcus asked, when she returned. 

"Yes; he and the children." 

Sister Harmon, good old scheming soul, said she had 
an errand at a neighbor's. Janet pleaded to go instead, 
but she was ordered to stay and entertain her company. 

"The Bishop is your company, mama, not mine." 
The words leaped from her as though she could not con- 
trol them. Then she straightway apologized. 



82 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"All right, mother, go on. I'll do my best. You'll 
forgive me, won't you, Brother King?" 

"I forgive all men likewise all women," he 
answered, "in hopes that I also shall be forgiven of them." 

The door was open, and the moon shone in on the 
floor. A cool breeze came from the mountains, and blew 
out like a sail the little white curtain at the window. Mar- 
cus drew his chair into the draught. Janet cleared the 
table. 

"How long have you iived with Brother James?" he 



"Just this summer." 

"And how long has he been feeling as he does?" 

"I don't know. He says very little to me about 
such things. I was somewhat surprised myself at what 
he said to you the other day." 

"You don't know how sorry I am when I see a man 
like Brother James fall into the dark. Why, he has bee n 
on a mission, preached the Gospel to hundreds, and done 
a vast amount of good; and after it all to apostatize! I 
don't understand it. Now, if it had been you or me, 
Janet, who haven't done much for the Church, and who 
are quite new, it wouldn't have been so surprising; but 
Brother James well, its awful." 

"I did not think it was that bad. He's been very 
kind to me." 

"Janet, do you know what rumor has it about you?'' 

"No; what rumor?" She stood leaning against the 
open door. The moonlight streamed through her hair, 
making a peculiarly beautiful effect. 

"Why, that you and Brother James are keeping com- 
pany." 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 83 



. . 



'And what if we are? Whose business is it? She 
stood up erect against the door. Marcus leaned across 
the cleared table and looked at her. He had never seen 
her so charming. 

1 'Janet, I did not mean to offend you by repeating 
gossip," he said quietly. "For my own knowledge I 
wanted to know." 

She stood as if rigid. Marcus could hear that she 
breathed hard, but she said nothing. 

"I wanted the information, Janet, so that I would 
know how to act. 1 do not wish to be unfair or unmanly. 
If you have promised to marry Brother James, then I'll 
say no more." 

It was a bold move he made, but he might as well 
out with it. 

"I've not promised to marry Brother James." 

"Thank you for telling me. Won't you sit down 
here, Janet, while I talk to you." 

She answered not, she did not move. So Marcus 
arose and stood on the other side of the open door, quite 
close to her. A field of ripening wheat was just outside, 
but its countless ears would never hear. However, they 
nodded back and forth towards each other in the moon- 
light as if they were whispering a secret tale of. love. 

"Janet, you can't imagine the responsibility there is 
in being Bishop even in such a small place as this. I've 
been alone in the work long enough, and if I can get some 
one to help me, it will be better." 

"You can get ten girls to marry you, if that is what 
you mean, " she said with an effort. 

"But I don't want ten, I want but one " 



84 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"And she is in Hungerton. You are in a fix, Bishop/' 
There was a sneer in her tone this time. 

Marcus walked back to the chair. He was silenced. 
She had turned on him, she was playing with him, and he 
kne# now that he loved her. He could not say anything 
to her, and she stood there looking staring out into the 
fields. 

''Well, Janet," he said at last, "I see that it is useless 
to say anything further to you tonight." He pushed the 
chair away and reached for his hat. "Perhaps, tomorrow 
but Brother James will be here then and there is no 
telling oh Janet, why do you despise me? what have I 
done that you should hate me? 1 ' 

The girl walked waveringly to the chair, leaned her 
head on the table, and burst into loud sobs. Marcus stood 
hat in hand as if helpless. Then he went to her, and as 
a father would place his hand on the head of a child, he 
placed his on the bowed head. He drew another chair up 
to her, and sat there until her sobs grew less violent. 
Then he gently took her hand, and lifted her head from 
the table. . All her passion had vanished, and she yielded 
to each pressure of his hand. 

"I did not mean to be hard, " she said at last, "but 
I thought you never have cared for me, and now your talk 
puts the devil into my heart. Forgive me, Marcus." 

"I have nothing to forgive, but you have much. I 
have ill-treated you. I have" neglected you, but it shall 
be so no longer. Do you think you can forgive me, and 
learn to love me?" 

"I love you now, Marcus." She .only whispered it, 
but he heard it plainly, and he pressed her head onto his 
shoulder, while her soft, warm hand clasped his in a firm 



MARCUS KING,IMORMON. 85 

grasp. The breeze sank to a zephyr. The moon sailed 
behind a cloud. Then he kissed her, and what were words 
after that? 

''Marcus," she said, "now I must talk. Mother will 
be here presently, and I don't care for her to see my 
swollen eyes. Let us walk up and down outside!" 

So Marcus slipped her arm into his and they walked 
down the road bordering the wheat field and the hay 
meadow. 

"Marcus, you haven't said that you love me." 

"Then I will say it now." 

"Hush! but we may take it for granted that you care 
a little for me. Still now don't deny it, Marcus you 
think more of Alice Merton.'' 

"But that is in the past. It is useless to talk about 
it." 

"Perhaps, and perhaps not. However, let us under- 
stand each other, let us have no secrets between us. I 
have told you mine." 

"And you don't care for Robert James?" 

"Not a bit. I never did, I cared for you only, and 
I shall thank God that tonight He has answered my pray- 
ers." 

How could Marcus have been so blind to such a sub- 
lime love! 

"Now listen to me, "and she pinched his arm. "I'm 
not going to marry you just yet." 

"Well, why not? Hasn't my house stood vacant long 
enough?" 

"I'm going to give you a chance to marry Alice 
first." 

"But my dear Janet, you can't give me that chance." 



86 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"Hush, let me tell you. We can wait and see. We 
know not what time will bring. We must give Alice a 
chance. She loves you, and you love her you love her 
more than you love me. I'm used to that thought now, 
so it doesn't hurt me. You can marry Alice first, I'm wil- 
ling. It is her right. I will come in afterwards and be 
a help to you both.'' 

4 'My dear girl, I bless you for your words. I had not 
thought it possible for a woman to say them as you have. 
I do love Alice, and I think I always shall; but remember, 
that does not hinder me from loving you, yea, now a hun- 
died fold more than ever." 

"I know it, Marcus, I know it; you love me of course, 
but nut as you love Alice; and it's all right. It's not to 
be expected otherwise. We must give Alice another 
chance. If you marry me first, it would break Alice's 
heart. I can come in second, you know. That wil! be 
easier for her, when she understands it." 

"Yes; but she never will understand, I fear." 

"She may, Marcus. That's in God's hands. We must 
give her another chance anyway. Marcus, I had a letter 
from her last winter. 2 ' 

"You?" 

"Yes; I've never told you before because I was jeal- 
ous. She asked about you. Oh, it was such a beautiful 
letter, and full of love for you. I believe she is a good 
girl, and I have not treated her right because I have not 
answered it yet." 

"You surprise me. How could she have gotten your 
address? She has never answered any of my letters." 

"I suppose she got it through Brother Dixon, or 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 87 

perhaps through Robert James. He has written back, I 
understand.' 7 

It was getting late. The mother was looking out of 
the door for them, and they walked up to her arm in 
arm. 

"It's all right, mother," said Marcus, "Janet and I 
have come to an understanding at last, and we want your 
sanction and blessing." 

"And you may have both," she said, and continued 
about now being able to lay down her bones in peace, 
which remark Marcus just made out as he leaped over the 
fence on a short cut home. 



CHAPTER 12. 

It was a pleasant party that assembled at John Dix- 
on's the next day. There were John and his wife, Sister 
Harmon and Janet, Robert James and the two children, 
and the Bishop of Hernia, with little Ida alternately on 
his arm and knee. 

There are no more pleasing associations than those 
formed in the mission field. Somehow that "first love" 
for the Gospel is awakened and renewed by meeting 
friends whom one has learned to know and love while 
preaching the Gospel. What good times to be recalled! 
What outpourings of the Spirit to be remembered! What 
experiences with opposing forces to be narrated again! 
And so that little party at Dixon's were all day, between 



88 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

meetings, talking of old times, and rejoicing in each 
other's company. 

It was not until towards evening that Robert James 
showed his disposition to find fault, and them he began 
in a manner that jarred on the Bishop's feelings. Marcus 
dH not care to bring on any discus- sion and so mar the 
good spirit of the company; but he could not quietly hear 
slandered those whom he considered apostles and proph- 
ets, and although not without their faults, still $>ood men. 
So he said to his friend Robert in the hearing of al!: 

"Brother James, I'm surprised at you I'm surprised 
that you should say such things. You are a reasonable 
man, and understand the philosophy of the Gospel. Tell 
me how it is that the leaders, the heads of the true 
Church, can be in the wrong, and still that Church grow 
and prosper, and be in the right? Can the head be sick 
without the body knowing it?" 

"The body does know it." 

"An individual now and then thinks so; not the 
Church as a whole." 

"Well, I think I know what I'm talking about. I 
know more about Brigham Young than you do. " 

"You may do that. When I know that he stands at 
the head of the Church of Christ on the earth, I do not 
care to know all his faults and misdoings, for of course 
he is not perfect, being a mortal like the rest of us. 
Knowing the Gospel to be true, I can be satisfied with whom- 
soever God pleases to put at the head. I can reason no 
other way. I can not believe that an impure fountain can 
bring forth pure waters." 

"I'm not going to argue with you, Marcus, on that 
point." 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 89 

"I didn't say that to you, when you came to Hunger- 
ton. I reasoned with you, and tried to hold my point, 
too; but when I saw that I was beaten, I gave in, 
didn't I?" 

"Yes; but really I see no use in talking about it. 
What's done can't be undone. I've sold my place and am 
going East. Perhaps they will cut me off the Church 
before I go. Then I'll be out of it, and will get away 
from Mormonism for a while. Come, children, let's be 
going. I'm sorry that I should disappoint you so, Marcus, 
but I can't help it. You keep on, and you'll be all 
right." 

He tried to laugh, a forced, sickly laugh, as he pre- 
pared to go. The others looked on in silence. Marcus 
arose and stood by the table, his eyes blazing. 

"Robert, wait a moment. Once you taught me the 
eternal truth, and now I am going to tell it to you. I 
want you to remember that I have borne my testimony to 
you. You said you would get away from Mormcnism. 
Robert James, I tell you solemnly you can not get away 
from Mormonism, you can not get outside of it. Do what 
you will, go where you may, eternal truth will be there and 
that is Mormonism. Take the wings of the morning and 
fly to the uttermost parts of the universe, and there is 
God and His children that is Mormonism. In life or in 
death Mormonism will meet you and remind you of its 
truth. You might as well try to run away from your in- 
nermost soul as to escape from Mormonism. You might 
as well try to get outside of time and space as to get out- 
side of Mormonism. You can't do it, Brother James, you 
can't do it." 



90 MARCUS KISG, MORMON. 

' Tis the last and the first, 

For the limits of time it steps o'er; 

Though the heavens depart, and the earth's fountains burst/ 
Truth, the sum of existence, will weather the worst, 

Eternal, unchanged, evermore' 

and that is Mormonism!" 

They had all arisen. No one spoke, but Robert James 
put on his hat, took a child by each hand, and walked 
away. He went straight to where his horses were feed- 
ing by his wagon, and taking no heed of the pleadings to 
remain, he hitchejl up and drove off to town. The last 
that was heard of them in the dark was the children's 
crying. 

****** 

Janet went to the city, had a talk with Robert James, 
and then came back to Hernia. She and Marcus were 
much together, and now it was generally conceded that 
the Bishop would get a wife. However, weeks went by 
and the golden autumn came, and still there was no 
change. 

' 'You are not to be in a hurry, Marcus, about my 
setting the date," said she; "ycu'U grant me that." 

"Take your own time, my dear; but our good people, 
the neighbors, are getting impatient," he answered. 

Meanwhile, Janet had answered Alice's letter, and in 
due time of the stage coach she received an answer. It 
was a strange letter. 

Expressing, as the writer did, strong condemnation, 
she, at the same time, could not hide her love for Marcus. 
Janet could read that plainly between the lines. Janet an- 
swered it at once, and in her letter she told Alice the facts 
as regarding Marcus and as regards herself. She was 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 91 

open with her, laying bare her soul to the unknown girl. 
Janet thought it was her duty to do so. She meant to do 
what was right by Alice Merton, and give her the one 
chance more. She had studied it all out during her long 
absence from Hernia, when she had been greatly in doubt 
whether Marcus had any love for her. She had thought 
of that first love of hers, which had been so easily changed. 
As she looked back upon it, she thanked God that it had 
gone no further than it had. When she thought of Mar- 
cus, with his high ideals, his nobility of character, and bis 
manhood, how low in the scale that other man sank! But 
but she was not sure of Marcus; far from it. Looking 
back on their acquaintance, she could find nothing in him 
that would indicate more than a deep respect for her. 
His mind had been so filled with Alice that there had been 
no room for her. At first she resented it, and vowed that 
she would never again show her heart to Marcus, as she 
had done on some occasions. But the more she thought 
and prayed about it, the clearer became her right position 
toward herself and them. Envy left her, resentment 
found no place within her heart. It was all shown to her 
so clearly. Her duty was plain. There was sacrifice in 
it, but beyond it all there was peace and joy, and a glory 
which God gave her a glimpse of. With all this in her 
soul she had penned that last letter to Alice, and now she 
would wait for an answer. It would take weeks, perhaps 
months, but wait she would before she would give her 
hand to Marcus King. And Marcus also waited patiently. 
In those early days, the one house, sometimes rude, 
answered for meetinghouse, schoolhouse, amusement hall 
a place for all kinds of public gatherings. Marcus had 
his ideals even in these wild surroundings, and he did not 



92 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

lose sight of them. That fall, when the harvesting was 
over, he began the movement to build that new meeting- 
house. That meetinghouse? Yes, it was the only one of 
its kind in the valley for a long time, and many of the old 
settles can yet tell of that wonderful structure. 

Marcus talked the project up well before beginning, 
and the majority of the people were heartily in favor of 
his plans. A few thought the schoolhouse good enough, 
and said the Bishop was going back to his old sectarian 
notions of fine churches. A building committee was ap- 
pointed, of which Marcus was chairman. He was also the 
architect of the new house, while Brother Wood was the 
foreman of the work. 

"We fix up the best we know now, " Marcus preached, 
"when we invite our friends to see us. Let us not dis- 
criminate against the Lord. Every Sabbath at least we 
invite the Lord to meet with us, and what kind of a re- 
ception room do we provide for Him? Well, you all know 
what rendition our room is often in on a Sunday after a 
dance. There can be nothing too good for the Lord or 
His Spirit. We try to make our temples the most beauti- 
ful buildings that the human hand can construct, in proof 
of this. I have heard some complaints about this matter. 
One brother said that it was sectarian, and smattered of 
the pride of the world. I don't think so. The children 
of this world are often wiser than the children of light. 
They make their places of worship beautiful and attrac- 
tive, that people may be drawn to them and take a delight 
in coming. Why shouldn't we do the same? We, out 
here in the West, must 'rough it' all the week. We come 
in close contact with mother earth, and her stains are 
upon us. We learn to live with the soil and forget to 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 98 

look up to the beautiful blue sky. Now, I think that once 
in a while we should get away from our life of drudgery, 
and soar, as it were, in the beauties of heaven. I think 
we should have a place into which we might enter, and 
its very atmosphere draw our minds to God." 

So the work was begun. The logs came from the 
canyon, and the hewers cut them smooth on both sides 
A site was selected which could be irrigated, and a foun- 
dation was laid. Marcus had plenty of skilled laborers 
who were glad to thus renew their acquaintance with 
their old trades. Each took a pride in doing his best. 
There was a scarcity of material, but it was a wonder to 
see the ingenuity that was exhibited to overcome diffi- 
culties. 

The sisters were not idle. With Janet at their head, 
they gathered a great many rags, which they sewed and 
weaved into beautiful strips of carpet. These were for 
the stand and aisles, and perhaps the whole floor if they 
could get enough. Then there were some coverings for the 
windows, something in the nature of curtains or blinds to 
keep out the hot summer sun. There was much planning 
before anything satisfactory was devised. Then Janet 
said there must be some decorations for the walls, and 
old trunks were ransacked for suitable pictures. These 
were put into all sorts of crude but artistic frames. 

The whole of Hernia was aroused. Every man, woman, 
and child had or wanted something to do with the build- 
ing of the new meetinghouse. This was true even of the 
grumblers. As the ^ alls slowly arose, the plasterer was 
scheming and experimenting to get the best plaster out 
of the material he could procure. The painters and dec- 



94 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

orators, and there was an artist among them, also were 
hard at work mjxing unheard of pigments and experiment- 
ing with their own rooms with effects of ttimes the most 
startling. 

As heads of the two divisions, Marcus and Janet met 
and schemed. Marcus had drawn quite elaborate plans 
which he explained to Janet one afternoon. 

"In the spring we shall try to get some shrubbery/' 
said he. "I have already sent after some grass seed which 
I intend to plant this fall. Then here we shall have a row 
of trees of poplars, box elders, locusts, and others that 
we can get. Then Pm going to write back to Hungerton 
to the old janitor there and ask him to send me some roots 
of that ivy which nearly buries the church. That I will 
plant here on each side of the vestibule, and make some 
trellis work for it to climb upon/' 

They leaned over the table and examined the draw- 
ings, their heads being close together. 

"Where are your flower beds? 1 ' she asked. 

"Wt- 11, I hardly dared go that far." 

"Why not? Flowers are as easy to raise as trees or 
grass. I want some flowers. A big boquet must be on 
the stand every Sunday morning." 

"I'm no florist, but you are, so here goes." Where- 
upon some circles and diamonds were drawn upon the 
paper. 

"And if any teams are hitched close by to injure all 
this, there'll be a row!" 

"That's all provid d for," laughed Marcus. "See 
here across the street we are to plant a double row of 
trees for the trains." 

"I like this," said Janet. "You know this is doing 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 9^ 

something. We're shaping the future, we're creating, 
we're pioneers." 

'I've told you that before, haven't I?" 

They were in reality two happy people. 

Then Janet reminded Marcus of the wildness of life 
among the young people, and their lack of gentle manners. 
Marcus was aware of it well enough, but was at a loss to 
know how to check it. So, together they talked it over 
and decided that they would take a more active part in 
the amusements of the young people, in fact, be the lead- 
ers, and show them by example rather than by precept 
how to act. 

They went about their task quietly, but soon there 
was a marked change. In the dance Marcus and Janet 
were the first and leading couple. They made themselves 
as prominent as they could, and all had to look at the 
graceful couple and unconsciously follow them. 

In all this Marcus and Janet put their whole soul. It 
was a labor worthy of any talent. 

Then came October, and the conference. A jolly 
party drove in to the city to attend. The splendid meet- 
ings were greatly enjoyed. On the afternoon of the last 
day the list of missionaries called to the world was read. 
Among those called to preach the Gospel to the United 
States was the name of Marcus King. 

Marcus immediately an&weied the call. He had very 
little preparation to make. He called together his coun- 
selors and some of the leading brethren and laid before 
them his plans for finishing the new meetinghouse, and 
they said that his ideas should be carried out as far as 
possible. John Dixon would look after his personal affairs. 



96 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

He asked Janet if she had fixed the date for their marriage 
yet, and she said she had not. 

"I know people will talk/' she explained, " and wonder 
why we do not get married before you leave, but we will 
have to stand that. Now, more than ever, that date must 
be uncertain. You will visit Hungerton, and see Alice; 
meanwhile I will wait and see how things turn out." 

' 'Janet," said he, * 1 appreciate your motives. I had 
not thought it possible for woman to sacrifice herself for 
woman as you are doing." 

"In the end there will be a greater blessing," said 
she, "so there really is no sacrifice." 

"Yes; with the light you have on the subject of God's 
eternal providences, it may be possible. To the women in 
the world it would not be. Janet, you are dearer than 
ever to me for what you say, because it is true that I love 
Alice, and because I do want to see her again. Now that's 
a paradox. You ought to be angry at that, to spurn me, 
or go away with a broken heart; but you do neither. You 
understand that it is possible for me to love you both." 

But her heart was full, and she did not answer. A 
tear slowly trickled down her cheek, which Marcus kissed 
away. 



CHAPTER XIII. 

In a few days Marcus was ready. The missionary 
company went with some travelers going East. The 
weather continued to be fair, and good time was made. 
As he traversed nearly the same ground over which he 
had traveled with his hand-cart, Marcus could not help 



MARCUS KING, MORMON 97 

but think of that terrible trial, and then of the experience 
which had been crowded into the past three years of his 
life. And here he was again, a preacher of the Gospel, 
not with a salary, but traveling without purse and scrip 
as the apostles of old. 

Winter had set in before they reached the railroad, 
but there was no suffering; then, drawn by the iron steed, 
they soon reached their destination. 

Marcus labored for some time in and around the city 
of St. Louis. Here he found a number of old-time friends, 
some of whom received him kindly and others did not. 
Marcus entered into his work with keen interest. That 
he represented an unpopular people, and preached an un- 
popular doctrine which brought upon him much opposi- 
tion, only spurred him on and gave life and zeal to his 
labors. 

One day he found a college chum, one who had also 
entered the ministry and was now the popular pastor of a 
large church in the city. His friend was surprised to see 
him, and doubly astonished when he learned some of his 
history. He invited Marcus to call on him the next even- 
ing, which invitation was promptly accepted. 

Marcus had walked all day and was tired and hungry 
when he made his way to his friend's house. At his knock 
a servant girl showed him in and took his hat and over- 
coat. He had no rubbers, so he wiped his feet well on 
the rug before entering. The parlor was warm and well- 
lighted, and Marcus sank into the cushions of an arm-chair 
with an old-time abandon to ease and comfort. 

That must have been a dream, that trip out in the 
wilds of the Rocky Mountains among the Mormons! Was 
he not sitting in his own cozy parlor at Hun^erton? His 



98 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

mother would soon call him to dinner. He could hear the 
clatter of dishes, and the delicious odor of cooking viands 
came through the opening and closing doors. Yes, it 
must have been all a dream: the hard, long travel across 
the plains; the sleeping and eating on the ground; the liv- 
ing in log houses; the poor, coarse food; the wild, dry, 
desert West, pregnant with the smell of alkali and sage- 
brush; the hot sun; the cloudless sky; the Mormons and 
all his supposed friends; there was Janet busy with the 
worked co/ering which she said was to be for the pulpit; 
she leaned over her work, the long braids of dark red hair 
hanging over her shoulders; her mother moved quietly 
about in that little white-washed room; the plowing and 
the planting; the irrigating and the harvesting; the hay- 
ing; the digging of potatoes that made the hands rough 
and sore; the long, hard day's work in the hot sun yes; 
what a wonderful dream it had all been! 

"Good evening, Marcus," said his friend, stepping in, 
"I see you've come." 

Marcus crossed his knees again; he imagined for an 
instant that his warm slipper was dangling on the end of 
his foot, but in reality he saw nothing but a wet, much- 
mended shoe. 

"You'll excuse me for keeping you waiting so long," 
said the parson. 

"Oh," I am quite at ease, you see. You have it quite 
comfortable here." 

"Well, not as I wish. The salary doesn't allow much 
yet; but I am hoping to get a raise soon, and then I ex- 
pect to fix up as I should like. If it's a fair question, 
how much do you get? I understand you are travelirg 
in the interest of the Mormon Church?" 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 99 

"Well, now," said Marcus, smiling, "I don't know 
yet, as the account is kept by the recording angel; but I 
hope I shall have my share when I get to heaven . We 
get no salary here." 

Marcus saw that the pastor doubted his word, so he 
said no more on that subject but the talk soon led on to 
old times, and what Marcus had seen in the West. Then 
dinner was announced, of which the hungry missionary 
was heartily glad. His friend introduced him to his wife, 
and the three sat down to a dinner which again reminded 
Marcus of bygone days. 

His friends could not understand Marcus. That he 
could forsake his all and c-ast his lot with the Mormons 
was beyond belief. They did not say as much in words, 
but Marcus understood it from their manner. In their 
talk that evening, Marcus did not desire to press his doc- 
trines on them, but when the pastor began to use sarcasm 
tn regard to some of the teachings of the Mormons, he 
put himself on the defense. Especially was the word 
"Saint" obnoxious to the reverend divine. 

"My friend," asked Marcus, "what is a Saint?" 

"A holy person; not sinful mortals as we." 

"You have not read your Bible for that .answer. In 
olden times every person who became a member of the 
Church of Christ was called a Saint. They were not all 
perfect men and womer, but mortals like us." 

They sat around the table cracking nuts, after the 
dinner. The parson's wife looked strangely at Marcus as 
he talked. 

"We call ourselves Saints and the world calls it sac- 
rilege. That is because they have changed the meaning 
of the word. In our pictures of Saints, we see some old- 



100 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

monk or nun, with eyes turned up to heaven, and a long- 
drawn, unnatural expression on the face, and we are led 
to believe that a living flesh and blood mortal cannot be 
a Saint. I claim to be a better Saint now than a few years 
ago when I had somewhat of a ministerial look on my face. " 

Marcus laughed, but neither the parson nor his wife 
joined in his merriment. 

"We are the children of God, and we are here for a 
purpose," continued Marcus. "The flesh is not an evil 
tenement to be despised, for by so doing we despise the 
noblest works of God. The highest type of personal 
holiness is not obtained in the cloister, but out in the 
thick of the world's temptations, battling with sin and 
error, gaining experience by what we suffer, overcoming, 
conquering. There is opportunity enough for self-denial 
and self-renunciation in our daily lives. A man can be a 
man and a Saint at the same time. Manhood, woman- 
hood and sainthood are synonymous. Don't you think so?" 

"You haven't forgotten how to preach yet, " said his 
friend. 

"Why, no; I'm a preacher, you know/' 

Out again in the wild night, Marcus realized that he 
was not dreaming, but that life was real enough. The 
snow came in thick gusts and he wrapped his coat closely 
around him as he went to his lodgings. His friend had 
not even asked him to stay over night, neither to call 
again and see them. Well, it was all right. 



CHAPTER XIV. 

One morning Marcus received a number of letters 
from the West. One was from Janet, one from John, 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 101 

and some from his friends. One had come from Hunger- 
ton, and had traveled the long journey back again. The 
handwriting was not his mother's, and when he opened it, 
he knew the cause: his mother was dead now nearly two 
months ago. 

It was sad news to Marcus, he had hoped to see her 
yet once more; but now she had gone to his father. She 
had borne the news of his son to him. Did they under- 
stand the truth there and rejoice that they had a son 
on earth who was an honor and not a disgrace to them 
now? Marcus believed they did. 

Shortly after New Years Marcus set out on a long 
journey. He meant to reach Hungerton early in the 
spring, and even if he could do nothing in the way of 
preaching there, he wanted to see his mother's grave. 
Besides, there was a little property which he would have to 
dispose of. 

Marcus walked from village to village and from 
farm to farm, preaching the Gospel, meeting with the 
usual ups and downs incident to missionary life. People 
had very little use for religion. The great question be- 
fore the country was politics. Tha .nation was in a tur- 
moil. Congress was vainly trying to adjust the rights of 
"slave states" and "free states." Kansas was the scene 
of civil war. John Brown had made his raid on Harper's 
Ferry, had been captured and hanged. Forebodings of 
the coming conflict filled the air, and Marcus remembered 
the utterances of the Prophet Joseph on the subject. 

As he neared Hungerton it seemed to Marcus that 
people became more indifferent to his religious teachings. 
Some threatened him with mob violence if he did r ot leave 



102 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

the country; but as he did not stop long in cne locality, 
they did not disturb him. 

One day, when warm spring winds had begun to 
thaw the snow, Marcus trudged along the country road. 
It was extremely hard walking because where the snow 
was not one soft slush he sank over his shoe tops in mud. 
He had walked all forenoon and had failed thus far to get 
anything to eat. He had no money, so all the afternoon 
he called from house to .house in hopes of getting Gospel 
talks and something to eat; but each succeeding house 
seemed more hostile than the one before. In the after- 
noon a storm came up and the rain fell in torrents. 

Marcus' clothes were wet through, but on he 
trudged. Between the farmhouses the forest began to be 
dense, and when evening came on he found it difficult to 
keep the road. 

Up to ten o'clock that night Marcus had asked at 
twenty one places for lodging and each time had been 
refused. Now he resolved to ask no more, but walk on 
in the storm all night and get to Hungerton the next day. 
He would get something to eat and a place to rest there. 

He walked slowly on. The mud and water ran in 
and out of his shoes. He took off his overcoat, as it was 
filled with water and was heavy. The trees overhead 
obscured the little light in the sky. The wind howled 
dismally. Such an utter loneliness Marcus had never 
felt. In other privations he had had human company, 
but here he was alone, and not a soul had kindness 
enough in his heart to take in from the storm a despised 
Mormon Elder. He was not far from his f crmer home. 
No doubt many along the road would have known him had 
he given his name. Three years ago he could have driven 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 103 

along the same road as the Reverend Marcus King, and 
would have been royally entertained at any of the homes; 
but now well, such is the way of the world. He did not 
expect any better treatment; but, ugh, how the streams 
of water ran down his back! 

He walked on, and the rain still fell. He passed 
one or two farm houses, but they were dark and forebod- 
ing. He would travel on. Though he was faint and 
weak, he would be refused no more that night. The 
mud clung to his feet like great balls. The trees brushed 
him with their great wet arms. 

He was following along a pole fence when he came 
to a clearing. A small house stood close to the road, and 
from a window a shaft of light shot out into the darkness. 
As he came opposite the' door he heard voices. He 
would ask for a drink of water. As he knocked on the 
door, the talking within ceased, and a man opened it. 
Marcus did not go in, dripping wet as he was. 

"Will you kindly give me a drink of water?" he said. 

"Come in, come in, sir; come in out of the storm," 
said the man. 

"I am dripping wet." 

"That's nothing; you can't spoil our carpet." The 
floor was of cleanly scrubbed pine boards. 

Marcus stepped in, and a young girl gave him a glass 
of water. A large open fireplace was nearly filled with a 
burning log. The room was so cozy, but Marcus turned 
to go again. 

"Its rather bad weather for traveling," said the 
man, "and you're out late tonight. Walking too?" 

"Yes," said Marcus. 

The wife now arose, and looked at her husband. She 



104 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

had been looking intently at Marcus all the time. The 
man understood. 

' 'Are you in a hurry?" he asked . 

"No; but I have no place to stop for the night, so I 
must be on the move." 

"Who are you?" 

"I am a Mormon Elder, preaching the Gospel with- 
out purse or scrip. I have asked for shelter and food 
twenty-one times during the day, and have been refused 
each time. I shall ask no more/' and he moved towards 
the door. 

"But, great God, man, if you want to stay here, 
you're welcome. I don't care what you are. Yau're cold 
and wet and hungry, and that's enough. Come up to the 
fire. Wife, get him something to eat." 

The wife did not obey instantly, but she came up to 
Marcus to take his dripping hat and coat. She peered 
into his face and said: 

"Are you Marcus King?" 

"lam. That is my name." 

"Why, Henry!" she exclaimed, "this is Marcus King, 
your old pastor at Hungerton." 

The man came up also and took Marcus' hand. He 
looked closely into the bearded face. 

"Are you the preacher from Hungerton?" 

"No, Henry," interposed the woman, "you know he 
left Hungerton, left the pulpit and the church, and joined 
the Mormons." 

Henry Sanford raised one hand to his eyes as if he 
would clear them of some mist. Then he knew him, and 
Marcus too recognized his friend whom he had last seen 
in Hungerton jail, a religious madman. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 105 

"I am pleased to meet you, friend Sanford, " said 
Maicus. "I am glad that you are looking so well, you 
and your family." 

"Yes; I am well now, and am rid of mind-destroying 
religion, which nearly sent me to the asylum. Religion is 
the greatest curse on earth. Perhaps I should not say 
that, as you are a preacher. But I can prove it. The 
twenty- one people who refused you shelter and food are 
all long- faced Christians. I i am an unbeliever, an infidel 
mother, what are we doing? Can't you see he is nearly 
starved. I'll get some dry clothes for you, sir; and you'll 
stay over night with us. This weather is not fit for a 
dog to travel in." 

In a very few minutes Marcus had on dry clothing, 
and was sitting by the fire eating supper. The children 
stood around in silence. The father began to talk about 
the coming presidential election, while the mother urged 
him to eat; but the hour was late, and soon all retired for 

the night. 

Marcus stayed with them all the next day. Mrs. 
Sanford told him their story, how that Henry had gradu- 
ally regained his mind, and how that he had turned rank infi- 
del. But it was a thousand times better than the way he was 
before, she said. He was kind to her and the children, and 
they all lived happily on the farm far away from churches 
or preachers. Then she told him what news she knew 
about Hungerton. He also had long talks with Henry, 
handling him wisely. He was deeply interested in politics, 
and from that subject Marcus led to science and at last 
to religion. Henry listened attentively. 

"Is that Mormonism?'' he asked. 

"Yes." 



106 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"Well, there's some sense to that. Why didn't you 
preach like that when you were in Hungerton?" 

"I could not give what I did not have. Now I have, 
and am sent to give." 

"You hold meetings?" 

"Whenever I get a chance." 

''Will you preach in our schoolhouse tomorrow?" 

"With pleasure." 

4 'All right, I'll see to it." 

And he did. The next day the news was spread? 
and early in the afternoon Henry Sanford drove with his 
whole family to the schoolhouse. Some said that he had 
"got religious" again, and that the neighbors had better 
look out for one of his crazy spells; but Henry was all 
right, and knew what he was doing. 

The "religion'' which Henry Sanford "got" at the 
meeting in the schoolhouse did not in any way disturb his 
mental equilibrium. Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, re- 
pentance from sin, baptism for the remission of sin, the 
gift of the Holy Ghost these were plain, simple truths 
substantiated by holy writ. The room was fairly well 
filled with people from the neighboring farms, and Marcus 
spoke with power to them. A few had known him when 
he was a preacher in Hungerton, and wondered at his 
joining the Mormons. "Such a young man!" said one. 
"Such a fine looking man!" said another. "Such a good 
talker !"aid a third. 

Marcus was not disturbed until towards the close of 
the meeting. Then a man in a farther corner began 
asking questions. Marcus answered them, but the man 
was not satisfied. Marcus asked his hearers to let him 
finish his talk, and then he would answer any question; 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 107 

but it was evident that the plan was to break up the meet- 
ing. The questioner would not sit down. Others began 
to talk out loud, and it seemed as though the meeting 
would end in an uproar. 

Just then Henry Sanford arose. He was sitting near 
the front, and he faced the crowd. 

"Ladies and gentlemen," said he in ringing words, "I 
hope we are p aceable citizens and will give this gentle- 
man a respectful hearing. He will answer your questions 
after he gets through. Can there be any thing fairer than 
that?" 

"His doctrines are deceitful," shouted someone. 

'"You will have a chance to prove that after awhile, 
Mr. Simpson," replied Henry. "I don't make many pre- 
tensions myself, but I believe in the golden rule the 
the rule, Mr. Simpson, that I have heard you expound more 
than once. Now you have a chance to practice what you 
preach. Sit down, Mr. Simpson, and don't disturb the 
meeting." 

As Henry was the justice of the peace, he spoke with 
authority. The noise subsided, and the meeting went on. 
At its close no questions were asked, but Mr. Simpson and 
his followers got away as quickly as possible. 

Marcus weit back with his friends, and spent the 
night. During the evening some neighbors called in and 
they had a pleasant time. Next morning Marcus went on 
his journey. Henry would have taken him to Hungerton 
in his wagon, but Marcus said he preferred to walk. The 
distance was short, and there were many places on the 
way where he desired to call. 

The rain had ceased. The 'few remaining clouds were 
dissolving in the western sky, and the sun shone bright 



108 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

and warm. The roads were quite firm under foot. The 
trees were dry. The air was clear and cool, and full of 
the coming spring. 

All forenoon Marcus walked along the road, callirg 
at the few farmhouses. As he neared Hungerton the 
country became familiar to bin. At noon he ate his 
lunch on the bank of a creek, which had been a favorite 
playground when a boy. Here he had often fished, and in 
the woods surrounding he had laid snares for the squirrels. 
The creek was now swollen with the rain and rushed down 
its bed in a brown torrent. Every hill and dale and stream 
now recalled memories of the past. Marcus lived again 
as a boy as he sauntered leisurely past the dear familiar 
scenes of bygone years. 

In the afternoon he reached the "top," so called be- 
cause from its summit the whole valley wherein Hunger- 
ton lay could be seen. The road skirted this knoll, and 
often had Marcus climbed the few rods up to its bare 
rounded surface, even as he now did. Here he got the 
first view of the broad, still-flowing river, within whose 
bended arm the town of Hungerton snugly rested. The 
same rude seat which had been erected on the "top" was 
there yet; and as Marcus rested on its weather beaten 
boards, he discerned the initials which he and his boy 
companions had carved on the back. It seemed so long 
ago, at the same time but yesterday. Where now were 
the boys? What had been their lot? Where had they 
roamed, and where settled? How many of those yet in 
the town before him would recognize the browned, 
bearded man as their former playmate? What schemes 
they all had planned ! Yes, seated on that same hill top, 
with the same beautiful panorama before them, they had 



MARCUS KING, MORMOM. 109 

mapped out their lives, as seemed grandest and be^t to 
their boyish imaginations. There was Joe, big, strong 
Joe. He was to be a merchant and marry sunny-haired 
Josie; but Joe turned student and became a college pro- 
fessor, and didn't marry" Josie Then Jim, the fastest 
runner in the crowd, whose whole aim in life was to learn 
to pitch a curved ball he went to school with Marcus, and 
became a preacher too. Then there was Tom, tow-headed, 
freckled-faced Tom, who took all the bantering the boys 
and girls gave him in such a quiet, good-humored way. 
The last heard of him was that he was on his way to the 
gold fields of California. Then Fred, who crushed his leg 
in the woods and ever after walked with a crutch. He, 
instead of Joe, became the merchant and married sunny- 
haired Josie. There was little Sammy, who couldn't 
climb the hill without geti ing out of breath. He alone 
had not wandered, as the little white cross in the grave- 
yard showed. Then there was Marcus, whose father was 
the minister, who was supposed to set the other boys a 
good example. What had become of him? Ah; he had 
become the black sheep of the lot, he had disgraced the 
community, had < v eserted his church and his charge, and, 
wo^st of all, had become a Mormon. 

Marcus sat until the sun sank low in the west. The 
river burned with burnished gold. The breeze tossed the 
swelled buds of the trees back and forth, as if rocking to 
sleep the impatient, waking children of the forest. Then 
the sun went down, and the gray shadows crept over the 
valley below, crept up the hill sides, crept up over the 
' 'top," and the whole earth was enwrapped in a soft twi- 
light. Then the heart of the young man was full. There 
was nothing else for him to do but to sink on the earth 



110 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

beside the seat and pour out to God the fullness of his 
bursting heart. 



CHAPTER XV. 

The gas had been lighted in the streets of Hungerton 
when Marcus entered. He meant first to find the lawyer 
who had charge of his small business affairs. He had no 
money, and he did not wish to ask for food and lodging 
without money to pay. So he walked up the main street, 
noting the changes in the town and the people. No one 
knew him, although he recognized many of his old-time 
friends. There was a peculiar feeling connected with it 
all. There he was, a total stranger in a town full of peo- 
ple who knew him. They crowded past him on the side- 
walk, but knew him not. He must have changed much. 

And there was the church. He saw its outlines in 
the dark, and there were lights within. Yes; there were 
the iron fence and gate. The same lamp-post stood near 
it. The trees seemed larger, but the church smaller. He 
walked by. People were entering. A block up the street 
was the lawyer's home. He would call there, as he would 
not likely be at the office. 

Marcus rang the bell, and the girl that answered him 
said that Mr. Brown, the lawyer, was out of town, but 
would be back tomorrow. So until tomorrow Marcus would 
have to wait. He went down the street again. People 
were still going into the church. Some carriages drove 
up and their occupants alighted at the gate. There must 
be some special services, or else the people had awakened 
to the importance of the week-day meeting. Marcus 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. Ill 

might as well join the crowd and get a look at the old 
church. He went in and found a seat at the rear near the 
door. The church was nearly full. The lights shone 
brightly, and the many flowers in front filled the room 
with their perfume. Being early for flowers, Marcus 
wondered at the extravagance. The usher was unknown 
to Marcus, so he was allowed to siC unobserved. 

For a moment Marcus felt out of place down by the 
door. He saw that the pulpit had been re-painted and 
upholstered; otherwise it was the same church. The walls 
were getting dingy, and some of the.seats showed signs of 
wear. It certainly was getting too small for such a crowd 
of people. 

And now the organist who had done faithful service 
for both Marcus and his father went to the organ, and the 
familiar notes echoed into the ears of Marcus King. They 
brought him back again to days gone by when he himself 
gave out the hymn and preached the sermon. The pastor 
now came in from the back door. He was a middle-aged 
man with a cleanly shaven face So that was his successor 
in office, thought Marcus. Well, he certainly looked pious 
enough to suit the most orthodox. The pastor did not 
proceed with the services, but arranged the flowers as if 
he was waiting for something. Then Marcus learned from 
the whispering around him that he was about to witness a 
marriage ceremony/ He wzs somewhat disappointed, as 
he had expected to hear the new pastor. 

More carriages drive up, and there is a bustle out- 
side. The people turn and look towards the door and 
whisper, ' 'There they come." The party come up the 
walk and into the vestibule where there is some delay. 
Then they enter. Marcus does not turn around, but first 



112 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

catches sight of them as they walk up the aisle. The man 
is tall and broad- shouldered; the girl's slim, graceful figure 
is clothed in white. ''The best men" and bridesmaids fol- 
low, and Marcus distinguishes among them some of his ac- 
quaintances. The parson meets the company in front of 
the pulpit, and is arranging them into their proper places 
for the ceremony. 

Marcus is now interested. He had not married many 
couples himself, but he remembered one old pair of fifty 
and sixty, and how odd it was for him, a young unmarried 
man, to bind together such old peopK But now the group 
is arranged, and the young people to be married step to the 
front. The gas lamps shine directly on them, and Marcus 
sees, apparently looking directly at him, the pale beautiful 
face of Alice Merton! 

For an instant the whole scene is a blur on his vision; 
then from it comes but one sharp outline, the figure of 
Alice. She stands there, young and fair and more beautiful 
than ever. She folds her hands in front where they hang 
listlessly down, as if she were a victim waiting resignedly 
for the sacrifice. Her face is white. 

The awful truth bursts upon Marcus as with a mighty 
flood. There . is Alice, his Alice, to be married, to be 
bound for life to the man at her side. The thought 
is unbearable. Marcus presses hard the back of the chair 
in front of him. Yet there they stand. The parson is 
slow in beginning. 

During that brief space of time Marcus lived over 
again his life with Alice Merton. (Afterwards he thought 
of the wonder of it all, how that every detail of years 
could be crowd* d into a panorama to be flashed before his 
mind in an instant). Then as a climax came again the 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 113 

last scene between them. But what could he do? He 
was helpless. She would have to go. She would have to 
be another's, and not his wife. 

The minister steps up to the pair, the woman on the 
left, and the man on the right. Then to the hushed 
spectators he begins to speak, quoting from the printed 
formula used on such occasions: 

"Dearly beloved, we are gathered together here in 
the sight of God, and in the face of this company, to join 
together this man and this woman in holy matrimony; 
which is commended of St. Paul to be honorable among 
men: and therefore is not by any to be entered into unad- 
visedly or lightly; but reverently, discreetly, advisedly, 
soberly, and in the fear of God. Into this holy estate 
these two persons present come now to be joined. If any 
man can show just cause why -they may not lawfully be 
joined together, let him now speak, or else hereafter for- 
ever hold his peace. 

1 'Darling, darling, you are mine, my very own jor 
time and for eternity" rang in Marcus' ears louder than 
the words of the minister. Those words were inspired 
and could not fall to the ground'unfulfilled. 

Marcus arose and stepped out in the aisle. 

"Alice, Alice Morton, I object to your marrying that 
man." he said. 

He stood still and erect amid the deathlike silence. 
Most of them knew him then by the familiar voice, and 
they were awed by the scene. The parson had never 
been interrupted like that before, and was visibly uncer- 
tain what to do. The bridegroom turned to him and bade 
him go on with the ceremony. Then Marcus spoke again 
in tones not loud but penetrating: 



114 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"I am Marcus King. Alice, do not marry that man. 
You are mine, mine, Alice, by the eternal laws of God." 

An audible oath escaped from the lips of the would- 
be bridegroom. Murmurs ran through the church, then 
there was silence again as Alice raised her hands to her 
head. She t)ok a step or two forward as if she would 
walk down the aisle, and then fell to the floor. 

In the confusion which followed Marcus stepped back 
to the door, and stood there looking or,. Those that 
pa3sed out glared at him, as they would at a venomous rep- 
tile. He saw that Alice was lifted up and carried to the 
platform, and when she again regained consciousness he 
heard her whisper: 

"Take me home." 

Then he went out and up the street. 

For the second time Marcus King had made a great 
sensation in his native town. By the next day the news 
was the talk of the town. Opinions were various. Some 
claimed that he did right in rescuing Alice Merton from 
ihe hands of an adventurer. Some said that the Mormon 
should have been tarred and feathered and driven from 
the country. Others shook their heads and didn't know. 
A few had seen Marcus' weatler- stained coat, but more 
had observed his majestic bearing as he had stood in the 
aisle protesting against the marriage. 

Marcus himself had gone that evening direct to a 
hotel and ordered supper and a bed. 

During the night he slept fairly well, and next morn- 
ing managed to reach Mr. Brown's office without a stir on 
the street. The business that could be attended to that 
morning being soon finished, Marcus went back to the 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 115 

hotel where he spent the day reading and writing letters. 
Here he heard the gossip and gleaned from it that Alice 
had been taken home. The marriage had been indefinitely 
postponed. In fact, .the would-be bridegroom had some- 
what brusquely demanded ttat the ceremony should go 
on, and had quarreled with Alice's old father. Then he 
had left, no one knew where, and it was believed by many 
that he was afraid of Marcus, that Marcus knew some- 
thing more of him than anyone else in Hungerton. When 
Marcus was approached on the matter and when he denied 
any previous knowledge of the man, plainly he was not 
believed. 

But what move to make next was not clear to Elder 
King. He would have to stay a few days in the town, but 
what to do about Alice he knew not. He did not repent 
of what he had done in the church, for many said that the 
man she was about to marry was an adventurer; besides, 
he had other and personal reasons. But what good would 
come of it, anyway? He longed to boldly call on Alice. 
She must be very ill, by what he heard; and he could be- 
lieve that from the face he saw in the church. Marcus 
had concluded that he must s^e Alice before he left 
Hungerton for good, but for that opening he could only 
wait. 

All the day he moved about no more than was neces- 
sary; not that he was afraid of anybody, but he considered 
it wisdom to be quiet. A few friends called on him, with 
whom he talked pleasantly, and told of the new country 
in the valleys of the West. That evening he visited some 
relatives of John and Eliza Dixon, and got home late. The 
next day he was busy with Lawyer Brown until in the 
afternoon. 



116 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

Looking out of the window of his room, he saw Mr. 
Merton drive up to the hotel in the old familiar buggy. 
He got out, fastened his horse, and came in. Presently, 
there came a knock on the door and a boy told him that 
he was wanted. 

"Is it Mr. Merton?" asked Marcus. 

"Yes, sir." 

"Then show him up." 

Mr. Merton had aged very much. Marcus could see 
that his hair was white and that his hands trembled as he 
met him in the hall and led him into his room. The old 
man was not angry, but shook the hand that Marcus 
offered him in a mild, unconcerned way. Then he took the 
proffered chair and sat and looked at Marcus for some 
time. 

"May I ask you how Alice is?" said Marcus. 

"She is ill, very ill, sir." 

Still he looked at the young man in that strange 
way. 

* '! sincerely hope, Mr. Merton, that I was not the 
cause of this illness perhaps I should not have been so 
rash but you know " 

"Yes; I know. Don't worry over that, young man. 
Alice was ill all the time, and should not have tried but 
he forced it. I might as well tell you the truth, and that 
is that you did a good deed in stopping the marriage. I, 
Marcus" and as the old man pronounced the word, his 
tone became softer "never encouraged Alice in casting 
you off, when you joined the Mormons. She did it on her 
own responsibility. Are you still a Mormon?" 

'Tes, sir." 

' 'Well, it's all right, I guess. Everybody to their 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 117 

notion abo it such things, though I must say that I think 
it would have been much more comfortable if you had re- 
mained with us. And now, what I came for is this: Alice 
wants to see you. Will you come?" 

Marcus' heart gave one great leap for joy. 

"It will be the greatest pleasure of my life," said 
Marcus, "to once more look upon her face." 

"Then you love her yet?" 

"I have never ceased to. love her." 

"And she loves you, too/' the old man murmured as 
they walked into the hall. 

In a few minutes Marcus and Mr. Merton were driving 
from the city out into a country road which followed the 
broad river. Very few words were spoken. Soon they 
came in sight of the gray farm house back towards the 
hills, up to which they drove. Marcus knew the place 
well and remembered its beauty in the summer when the 
trees nearly hid it from view; but now it had grown gray 
and weather-stained, corresponding to the sombre woods 
around it. 

Marcus alighted at the side door and was met by the 
mother. She took his hand and welcomed him, but there 
was a coldness about her. She took his hat and gave 
him a chair. 

"Alice wants to see you/' she said. "If you will ex- 
cuse me for a few moments I will see if she is awake/' 

During her absence, Mr. Merton came in. While he 
was hanging his coat in the hall, he motioned to Marcus. 

"You must excuse mother," he said, "if she treats 
you coldly. She doesn't understand. She believes in Mr. 
Carlton yet, and blames you. She has had great influence 
over Alice, and nearly forced her into the marriage, and 



118 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

it is only for Alice's sake that she will have you come. 
You understand, Marcus?" 

"I can appreciate her feelings, I think," was the 
answer. ''I do not blame her.'' . 

They went in again, and soon the mother came back. 
Alice was awake, and feeling strong enough to see Mar- 
cus, so he was shown into her room. The mother went 
out and closed the door, leaving the two alone. Alice 
had asked her to do that. 

Tne afternoon sun shone bright and warm, and the 
blinds of the large west window were drawn. A ray, 
however, came through at the side, and now fell across 
the bed where Alice lay propped up on the white pillows. 
When she saw him, she said "Marcus!" and held out her 
arms. He walked softly up to the bed, bent over her, 
and the white arms encircled his neck. She drew his 
head down beside hers and held it fast while- she whis- 
pered: 

"Forgive me, Marcus, forgive me!" 

But all he could say was "Darling, oh, my darling!" 

There are times when many words are weak, mean- 
ingless things, and that time had come in the life of Mar- 
cus and Alice. Language may communicate thought, but 
that was not what was wanted now. The feelings of two 
souls had accumulated, and had been pent up for a long 
time. The natural channel between two hearts had been 
clogged. But now every obstacle was removed, and free- 
ly the current of love flowed between them. The emo- 
tions are best indicated by a look, a motion, a pressure of 
the hand. Words are useless. Silence is the most elo- 
quent. 

Then the arms relaxed and fell down on the coverlet, 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 119 

and as Marcus sat by the bedside he took the thin 
hands in his and held them gently. The big blue eyes 
filled with tears, yet she smiled through them. 

"You have forgiven me," she said, "and I thank you, 
Marcus. " 

Then she closed hp.r eyes as if to sleep, and he 
smoothed back the hair from her forehead. 

"It's been too much for you. You are tired. I 
shall go now that you may sleep." 

"I am tired, and I believe I could sleep if you will 
stay. Marcus you must not go away any more, you must 
stay until " 

1 'Yes, I will not leave you untill you are well but 
don't talk any more. There, now, you must rest." 

He kissed her closed eyes and softly left the room. 
The father was walking back and forth on the floor; the 
mother sat by the table with her face in her hands. 

"I think Alice will sleep now," said Marcus." 

The father gave a sigh of relief. ' 'She has hardly 
slept for two nights, " he said. 

The mother also felt better, and was more cheerful 
as she walked back and forth from the supper .table to 
the door of the sick room, and seemed to feel more kindly 
towards Marcus. After supper Alice awoke much re- 
freshed. The lamp was lighted and the three went in. 
Alice spoke to them in a cheerful way. Then the doctor 
came. The father and Marcus went with him outside to 
hear his opinion. He shook his head. 

"But she is better, isn't she?" asked the father. 

"She seems so,this evening; but it is only temporary. 
The girl has no vitality. She is all run down. This has 



120 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

been with her fo.r a long time. The attempted marriage 

only brought the inevitable a little sooner. " 

X "Is it that serious, doctor?" asked Marcus somewhat 

alarmed. 

"I am telling you the truth. I do not care to con- 
ceal the facts from you. There are very small chances 
of her recovery. She may linger for some time or she 
may go rapidly." 

Mrs. Merton asked Marcus for Alice's sake to remain 
at the farm house. If he was not busy, they would con- 
sider it a favor; and Marcus said he would stay as long as 
he could be of any use. 

The doctor's words could not be doubted. The next 
day Alice was weak, weaker than usual; and although 
she did not talk much, there was a smile upon her face. 
Marcus sat by the bedside and she seemed content when 
her hand lay in his. The mother saw, and now under- 
stood, and left them alone much of the time. 

Spring days came on in rapid succession. The sun 
was bright, the winds were warm, and all nature stirred 
in its efforts to awake from its wintry sleep. The grass 
on the sunny sides of walls and ridges began to be green. 
The buds of trees swelled ready to bursting. The bees 
came from the hive and buzzed around the windows. The 
air was filled with fresh spring odors. 

And as everything without slowly awoke to life, so 
one within gently sank into death. The spring days went 
calmly by, and Marcus was yet at the farm house. 

It was one of those still afternoons when the world 
seemed taking a much needed rest that Marcus was sit- 
ting in his usual place by Alice. They were alone. The 
few sounds from the adjoining rooms were low; the loud- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 121 

est seemed to come from the little round clock on the 
mantel. 

' 'Marcus, bless me again. I want you to talk more 
to me." 

Marcus took from his pocket a vial of oil, anointed 
her with a few drops, and then, placing his hands on her 
head, blessed her. 

4 'Now I feel stronger," she said. "Tell me more 
about Joseph Smith and what he did and the angels and 
all those wonderful things." 

And he talked, quietly and in soft tones, and told her 
the whole beautiful story. 

"And out there in Utah," she continued, "you said 
it was a wild country. Tell me about it." 

So he told her of the mountains and the valleys, the 
streams and the Great Salt Lake, 

"Marcus, that friend of yours Janet. Have you 
her picture?" 

' 'I think I have a small tintype." 

"Will you let me see it?'* 

From a packet of letters he drew out the picture and 
handed it to her. She looked at it for some time. 

It is a good, sweet face; and you like her, don't you, 
Marcus?" 

"She is a good girl." 

"Yes; much better than I sh, don't contradict me. 
I know. I know a lot now. When I am gone, you will 
go back to Utah and marry her." 

''My dear Alice " 

"Yes; I want you to. It's all right. Bring me that 
little box on the dresser." 

Marcus brought it. 



122 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

"The key is hanging on the wall; yes; that's ic." 

She unlocked the small rosewood box and from it 
took a letter which she handed to him. 

"That letter is from Janet. It is the most wonderful 
I havfl ever received. I did not know a girl could write 
such a letter and mean it. Did she mean it, Marcus?" 

"Janet would deceive no one; but of course I don't 
know what she said. ' ' 

' 'Read it." 

Marcus read the letter, and Alice watched his face. 

"I think she means every word," he said. 

"What does she mean by marriage for time and 
eternity?" 

He explained. 

Then she closed her eyes, and held the tintype to her 
cheek. The mother looked in but did not enter. 

Alice reached for his hand, and she held it close. 

"Marcus, Marcus, oh, I am so glad! Such light, 
such blessed light! I can die in peace." 

Then she fumbled in the box again and found a ring 

"Do you remember it, Marcus? You gave it to me. 
Now I want you to give it to Janet with my love and bles- 
sing." 

Marcus took it, but his heart was too full for words. 
The clock ticked on. A breeze pushed the branches 
against the window panes. The tintype dropped from the 
pale fingers, and Alice slept again. 

Marcus stayed with her to the last. The grass and 
the trees were green and the first spring flowers were 
out when she died. Marcus prevailed on the father and 
mother to let her be buried in his own lot, close beside 
his mother. The old parents now seemed to cling to Mai- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 123 

cus as to a son, and it was a sad day when he bade them 
farewell. While at Hungerton Marcus received a call to 
another field, and he at once made preparations for the 
journey. He held no public meetings in his native town. 
The Lord would excuse him for that, he thought; but be- 
fore he left he had the rude crosses taken from his parents' 
graves and three neatly finished marble stones placed 
within the new iron railing around his lot. One of them 
stood by a newly made grave, and on it was inscribed, be- 
sides the name and dates: 

There is no death! What seems so is transition. 

This life of mortal breath 
Is but a suburb of the life elysian, 

Whose portal we call death. 



CHAPTER XVI. 

It was one of those sublime winter evenings only seen 
in the clear atmosphere of the high western regions. The 
whole earth was white below, and the sky above was deep 
blue, set. with innumerable twinkling diamond points. To 
'the west the plain stretched like a vast sheet of purest 
white. To the east the mountains arose buried under 
their ermine covering. Every rocky crag, each deep hol- 
low, was decked and filled with snow until the otherwise 
rough surface was shining smooth. 

The well-trodden snow creaked under their feet as 
Marcus and Janet walked arm in arm down the principal 
street of Hernia. 

"What is this business of so much importance?" 
asked he. 



124 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

''Well, they didn't tell me, of course," she answered. 
' 'All I was to do was to bring you there and ask- no ques- 
tions."' 

"Strange, they couldn't manage for another day with- 
out getting after a fellow the day he gets home I wanted 
to spend the evening with you, Janet." 

"Well," she laughed, as she clung the closer to his 
arm, "am I not with you?" 

"Yes, but halloa, what's this? Who's living in my 
house?" 

"Let's go in and see." 

They paused in front of the house Marcus had left 
unfinished. He saw that it was now completed. A bright 
light gleamed from the windows, and the smoke curled 
from the chimney. Janet led down the path and knocked 
on the door. When it was opened, there was a room full 
of people. 

"Brothers and sisters," said Janet, "let me introduce 
you to the Bishop of Hernia." 

Then what a scene there was! The crowd filled two 
large rooms, and around he must go and shake every one 
by the hand. Then there were welcomes and questions 
and words of jolly banter, until Marcus was fairly carried 
away by it all. When he had made the rounds, Janet was 
again at his side. The older members of the company 
each took a candle and marched two by two into the third 
room. In the center was a long table spread with food. 
As they filed in and seated themselves on the benches on 
each side, the candles were placed in wooden blocks with 
holes in. Marcus and Janet sat at the head of the table. 
A blessing was asked, and then one of Marcus' counselors 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 125 

made a speech of welcome, to which Marcus replied in a 
few words. 

Then the eating began, and right merrily it went on for 
a time. Suddenly, in the midst of the confusion, somebody 
pounded on the table for order, and Brother Wood arose. 

"I want to speak in this meetin'," he began, " 'cause 
Brother Johnson didn't tell it all. I reckon Brother King 
ought'er know why we have took such liberties with his 
house, an' I want ter tell him." [*' That's right. Go ahead".] 

"Well, yer see, when a man's on a mission his affairs 
at home kinder stop, an' when he gits back, he has to be- 
gin all over again. I've seen it lots o' times." ["Hear, 
hear! So have /."] 

"So, thinks I, Brother King'll need a house when he 
comes home to put his wife in, 'cause then o' course he'll 
take fur good Brother Brigham's advice. [Loud applause.] 
Well, an' right now I must make a confession. All you 
folks thought I had orders from Brother King to go ahead 
with the house, but I didn't; I done it on my own hook. 
["Oh, oh"] Yes, I could see that the Bishop didn't know 
nothin' about buildin' log houses, an' that the way he was 
doin' it would spile a lot o' good logs, so while all his 
beautiful plans and drawin's on paper was locked up in his 
box, I went to work an' finished this house 'cording to my 
notion." [Tremendous applause and laughter.] 

"An' folks," with a wave of his hand, "I tell ye, with 
the 'ception of the meetin'house, it's the finest in the 
town. It has all the latest improvements an' " 

His speech, which was the longest he had ever been 
known to make, was interrupted by a burst of song from 
the other rooms, and Brother Wood had to sit down. 

So the evening passed, and at its close Marcus again 



126 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

thanked them all, and especially Brother Wood. Marcus 
and Janet stood by the door and shook each one by the 
hand as they went home.- John and Eliza were the last. 

"You folks go on home," said John to Marcus. "We'll 
see to the house." 

Marcus wrapped Janet's cloak about her with a tender 
touch, and they walked home in the starlight. 

The next afternoon it snowed. Marcus went over to 
Janet's. She was alone. The grate was full of a warm 
fire. The little room looked very much the same as it did 
three years ago. Janet must have expected company. 
She did not wear her working dress, and there was just a 
tiny wave in her hair. 

"Janet," said Marcus, "I believe you have grown. 
You look taller.'' 

You must be mistaken; but I have had fine health. 
Haven't been sick a day. Perhaps that accounts for it." 

"You certainly look well; and Janet, you have grown 
so beautiful!" 

"0 shame, Marcus, to tell such stories!"' 

He sat down by the blazing hearth, placed a chair 
near him and motioned Janet to take it. Then they sat 
for some time looking into the fire. 

4 'You got my letters that I wrote after leaving 
Hungerton?" 

"Yes," 

''Would you like to see a picture nf Alice?" He took 
it from his pocket and handed it to her. 

"It agrees with my mental picture. I thought she 
looked like that." 

Then they talked for some time about his experiences, 
and the affairs at home. 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 127 

"Who was that man Alice was about to marry?" 
asked Janet. 

"Didn't I tell you his name? Let me see. I've nearly 
forgotten it. Oh, yes, it was Carlton, George Carlton, I 
believe." 

"Why, Marcus, that was the name of my but no, it 
couldn't be the same man." 

"He was a tall, broad-shouldered, black-haired man. 
I saw him only once in the church." 

"It must have been. I heard he had gone in the 
direction of Hungerton, but, but how strange! The 
man to whom I was once engaged answered to the same 
name and description." 

"That is strange. Could it have heen the same fel- 
low?" 

4 'But that's all in the past, and I don't like to talk 
about it," said she. 

"Then we won't." 

"Tell me more about Alice. " She looked again at 
the photograph. He drew a ring from his pocket, took 
her hand, and tried it on her finger. 

"Does it fit?" he asked. 

"Exactly." 

"That was Alice's ring." 

"And do you want me to wear it?" 

"Alice sent it to you. One of her last requests was 
that I give you the ring with her love and blessing." 

"Thank you. Poor, dear Alice! I shall wear it al- 
ways." 

"She got your letter as I told you, and pondered long 
over it. She died with full faith in the Gospel and a fair 



128 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

understanding of its principles. When we go to the En- 
dowment House we must do her work for her." 

"Yes, certainly. I have thought of the same." 

Then the door softly opened and someone stole in 
and placed one hand over each of their eyes. 

''Guess who it is." 

* 'Mother," exclaimed both at once. 

"Then don't sit the fire out," said Sister Harmon. 

A bright, sunshiny, winter morning Marcus and Janet 
drove to town in the sleigh, and spent the day in the En- 
dowment House. There were in reality two marriage 
ceremonies performed, and Marcus King got two wives in 
one day. True, one of those wives was in the spirit 
world; but the feeling that Alice was to be his was proved 
to be true. His prediction was fulfilled, and he was 
serenely happy in the thought. Janet Harmon's joy was 
also full, for had she not done a sister's part, and done it 
well! 

And now, dear reader, if you have been patient with 
me thus far, I must tell you a secret a secret that I 
have been tempted more than once to betray, but which, I 
think, I have kept pretty well until now and that is that 
I, Marcus King, have personally written the pages of this 
little story. I began this writing with no other idea than 
to keep the narrative in the third person until the end, 
but as I progressed, I saw that if I did so one of the chief 
results to be attained by my story would not be realized. 

Let me explain. Shortly after I joined the Church 
of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints many of my former 
friends began to talk disparagingly of me. Some criticised 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 129 

me severely, calling me a turn- coat, a deserter from my 
father's cause, and so forth. Some of my readers may 
remember how many of the leading religious papers of the 
East railed against me. At the time I paid no attention 
to it. Lately I received a clipping from an eastern paper 
purporting to be an account of my career. Who could have 
invented such stuff, I cannot conceive. At the same time 
I have received a number of letters inquiring about me. 
Seemingly, many people are interested in me and my do- 
ings, and it occurred to me to write out somewhat of my 
story and print it. Now if any of my eastern friends care 
a twenty-five cent piece to know the true state of affairs, 
I shall be pleased to mail each of them a copy of my book. 
So- much for preface, sandwiched in here at the wrong 
end. 

But just a word to my unbelieving friends: 
Someone has said that the glory of life is its fulness. 
I believe that. Had I remained with you in the world, I 
should no doubt have had a much easier time. I could 
have lived and died in Hungerton, respected by you all. 
I could have gone my daily rounds from my library to the 
church, wanting nothing to make life one smooth, pleas- 
ant journey if God had not shown me the little pond in 
which I was playing, the frail boat in which I was sailing, 
and then the mighty, boundless ocean beyond the horizon 
of my limited vision. I say with that little "if," I could 
have been with you yet, but what would have entered into 
my life to develop it, to give it a rounded fulness! Dear 
friends, believe me, this life is a reality. It is meant to 
be something. We are here to do and not merely to say, 
to'act and not merely to believe. To be good and true 
is not to draw a long face, to be religious is not to be 



130 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

stupid; but I have already expressed myself on that point 
to one of your members, as I have recorded in a previous 
chapter. 

Again, some of you ha\e impugned my motives. My 
only answer to that is in my story, 

And now, to all interested, (and I hope my story has 
been of interest to my brethren and sisters also) I am 
writing these last pages some years after the close of the 
events narrated in the first part of this chapter; and 
as I look back on those few intervening years I will tell 
you what I know of my (and I hope of our) friends who 
have figured thus far in my story. 

First, I must tell you that I have built an addition to 
my house. It is of brick and a story and a half high. I 
write these lines by an open upper window,looking out west- 
ward toward the lake. It was a hard blow to Brother 
Wood to think that his house wasn't good enongh for me, 
and I had to explain to him that a bishop needed much 
room to entertain all his visitors. We have no children 
yet, and I could not use the argument of a growing fam- 
ily. I shall not tear down the log house until Brother 
Wood dies. 

I have corresponded regularly with Alice's parents, 
and whenever missionaries have visited them they have 
been kindly treated. It was just last month that I re- 
ceived news of their baptism. Old as they are, they 
would not wait longer, and now they are anxious to come 
to Utah; but IJiave told them not to attempt the journey 
yet. The railroad will soon be finished, and then they 
can come much easier. And so they are waiting. 

Henry Sanford was the same staunch friend to the 
Elders, but did not join the Church. Noie gave them a 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 131 

warmer welcome nor defended them more from persecu- 
tion than he. When the war broke out, he joined the 
army, and in the long, hard struggle which has just closed 
he must have met his death. I have not heard from 
him since. 

Certainly strange things happen. Last week I bap- 
tized Robert James. He now lives here in Hernia, and is 
one of the best workers in the ward. He wandered about 
the country for years, but he acknowledges to me that he 
could not escape from Mormonism. So he gave it up, 
humbled himself, and came back. He is very quiet and 
unassuming, but everybody knows that I am one of his 
converts. So they respect him, and he is now the hap- 
piest man in the settlement. 

Mother Harmon died a year ago. 

John Dixon is a prosperous farmer. His barns and 
granaries are growing. They need to; his family is in the 
same condition. 

1 Hernia is prosperous. The people give the credit to 
the Bishop, but the Bishop gives it to his wife, and his 
wife to the Lord. 

Just a word about the meetinghouse. The people 
finished it according to my plans, and even exceeded them 
in elegance. The trees are now quite large, and the ivy is 
creeping up the walls and over the roof. None can esti- 
mate the refining influence that house has had on our peo- 
ple, and especially the young portion. I can see a vast 
difference between our young folks and some I know in 
the neighboring settlements. 

And that Mr. Carlton 

"Never mind that Mr. Carlton." 

It was Janet. She had been looking over my shoul- 



132 MARCUS KING, MORMON. 

der, and if there is anything that bothers me, it is that. 
I might have been vexed with her, but she now leaned 
over so far that her cheek touched mine. 

"Well, I'll not say anything about him, then/' I 
said. 

4 'No; don't." 

"Then I guess I'd better write The End.'" 

"No, not yet. I think you have to either make a 
change in a back page or an explanation now." 

"What do you mean?" 

Janet picked up a sheet of the manuscript and read: 
" % Marcus King, have personally written the pages of 
this history/" 

''That's wrong, because I wrote some of it," she 
said. 

I stared at her, not knowing what she meant. Then 
she looked over my pile of papers and picked out some 
sheets of an earlier chapter from which she read that 
Marcus King was thought of as having "high ideals," 
"nobility of character," and so forth. I took the sheets 
from her, and there, sure enough, was her handwriting 
for a page or more; and she had connected the thought so 
nicely. 

"Well," said I, "it would have been foolish of Marcus 
King to have said that about himself." 

"But it is true," said my wife, "and with your ex- 
planation it may stand." 

"I put the leaves back in their place. Janet came 
around, pushed the table away from me, and sat down on 
my knee. 

"Look at that beautiful sunset," she said. 

We do have grand sunsets at Hernia. I cannot con- 



MARCUS KING, MORMON. 133 

ceive of any finer even in Italian skies. There was a 
bank of heavy pearl-white clouds in the west, which 
formed themselves into great domes and high mountains 
with fathomless chasms between. Then the edges of the 
upper layers were tinged with pink which grew to a shin- 
ing golden red. As the sun sank lower, and its rays got 
under the cloudland, mountains and domes turned into a 
brilliant burning red, and then it seemed that there was 
another world out in space being consumed with fire. The 
crimson sun dropped down behind the mountain,yet the sky 
was all ablaze. 

"What do you think of it, Janet?" 

4 It is grand, it is grand! I think it is a faint reflec- 
tion from the glory of God." 

THE END. 



THE UNIVERSITY LIBRARY 
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, SANTA CRUZ 

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